How do I explain the basics of the Christian faith to my kids if I didn’t grow up in church?
What do you do when your kids ask you big questions about life and God, but you struggle to even answer those questions yourself? A friend recently asked me this question. She wanted to know how to answer the questions kids ask about life and God. She knew what she believed but was hesitant to try to explain it to her kids for fear of messing up the answers because she didn’t grow up in the church and missed out on hearing all the familiar stories taught in Sunday School.
Essentially, my friend and her kids needed to learn some basic theology (the study of God) and basic Bible doctrines (Bible beliefs) together. What you believe affects how you live so understanding and talking about theology with your kids is important to Christian parents. It doesn’t have to be as hard or complicated as it sounds. It can be reading and talking together at the dinner table or storytime. The Bible is the best book and tool for truth and encountering God. Christian parents need to help their kids learn how to be a part of the story of the Bible. Below are some resources that will explain that truth in easier to understand chunks but always point you back to the Word of God as the authority.
A good book to read to kids is the Jesus Storybook Bible by Sally Lloyd-Jones or Everything a Child Should Know about God by Kenneth Taylor. For adults who didn’t grow up in the church they can also read some of the familiar stories in The Whole Bible Storybook by William Marty. He recently published this in a new book for young readers to get them excited about why God’s Word matters.
Wayne Grudem wrote a fantastic and thorough resource called Systematic Theology which is currently what I use to raise my laptop up for video chats with my daughters because it’s SO huge and double the height when I stack it on top of my Strong’s Concordance. Getting back to the topic, Grudem also wrote a much shorter and concise book called Christian Beliefs: 20 basics every Christian should know. I highly recommend this small book for new believers and the mature. I often reference it when people ask me questions.
If you have never read through the whole Bible, now is a great time to start. You can pick up a “One Year Bible” which is just the Bible with dates added so you can be consistent in your reading. Another option is to read the Bible split into 6 books which read more like a modern book with one column pages. The Immerse Bible does just that.
If you are shopping for holiday or birthday gifts, these would make good gifts for yourself and friends. Keep a few on hand for last minute gifts throughout the year.
Table Talk: How do you explain your faith to your kids? What hard questions have your kids asked you? What would motivate you to read through the Bible?