Fatherhood comes with difficulties and blessings. Sure, there may be tough times, but there is joy when you can connect with your kids and watch them grow into the people God created them to be. One of your greatest opportunities is learning how to lead a child to Christ.
If you’re wondering how to lead a child to Christ, you’re not alone. For many of us, the thought of sharing our faith with our kids can feel overwhelming. But remember 1) this is God’s work, not your own. Your job is to point your child toward Jesus through your words and actions. 2) you are the person for this job. Why? Because God placed you in this home with this child. Here are 5 ideas for pointing your child to Christ.
5 Ideas for Pointing Your Child to Christ
Every kid is different, even the kids under your roof. And every kid will respond differently to the Holy Spirit’s work in their lives. Pay attention and listen to what your child is saying about his relationship with Jesus.
1. Meet your children where they are.
In figuring out the best way to lead a child to Christ, you have two basic possibilities. Some kids take time to process the gospel. They think through every step, so leading them toward Jesus looks like an ongoing conversation. If this is your child, nurture the conversation and look for teachable moments when you share another bit of truth with them.
For other kids, the gospel strikes like a bolt of lightning. They only need to hear the truth once to understand and embrace it. If that sounds like your child, be prepared and take advantage of the moment God provides.
2. Make church a part of your routine.
No, going to church does not earn God’s love. He already loves us more than we can imagine, which won’t change. But kids raised in church have a much better chance of responding to the gospel when they hear it.
What’s more, church activities provide great opportunities for spiritual conversations. For example, you can build on something they discussed in a small group. That conversation could open the door for leading your child to Christ.
3. Focus on making faith stick.
In Matthew 13, Jesus told a story about four different types of soil. Seed landed on each spot, but only one soil produced a lasting harvest. As a dad, you want your child’s heart to receive the gospel in a way that takes root and produces fruit.
Honestly, it would be easy to scare or manipulate a kid into making a decision. But that decision isn’t likely to run deep. Instead, explain salvation as the start of something great that lasts a lifetime, not an end unto itself. If your child sees it from that perspective, their faith will be more likely to “stick” into adulthood.
4. Use a resource.
As you think about how to lead a child to Christ, one concern may be saying the wrong thing or leaving out something important. If so, don’t be afraid to use a book or other resource to help you guide your child toward Jesus.
If you’re raising young men, explore 1 on1 bible studies that spark biblical conversations for you and your son. This is an easy way to lead your boys to Christ. For example, the workbook What Is a Christian leads children through all the major topics related to salvation, such as sin, Jesus, heaven, and even baptism. This resource allows kids to work through their questions as parents walk with them on the journey.
While it might seem like such a simple step, prayer is the most powerful weapon in your spiritual arsenal. Pray that your child’s heart will be open to Jesus and that they will have the wisdom and courage to confront whatever fears might hold them back.
Pray for yourself and for others who can reinforce the truth your share. When it comes to leading a child to Christ, prayer is the glue that holds everything together.
Research tells us that people are more likely to accept Christ as children. That doesn’t mean teenagers, college students, and adults never come to Christ. But it does emphasize the importance of beginning the gospel conversation with your child as early as possible. In order to lead your child to Christ, there is no better time to start than right now. Your efforts today can resonate throughout eternity.
Portions of this post originally appeared at Manhood Journey’s Blog.