Your kids probably beg you to read them a story before bed, or two or four or…
you get the point.
Kids love to hear a good story. Maybe you tell your kids stories of your adventures as a kid or make up your own characters and plots. But have you taken the time to share the story of how you came to follow Jesus? Research indicates that most of us haven’t shared this story with our kids. And that’s a big miss. Your kids would love to hear the story of your life before Jesus, your first encounter with Jesus and your life after.
We want our kids to understand the Gospel message and accept God’s gift of salvation. One great way to explain the Gospel is through your story.
In his book, Leading Your Child to Jesus, David Staal talks about the importance of sharing your own story with your children in a compelling and clear manner. “The potential outcome is helping your son or daughter understand his or her need for a personal relationship with Jesus when you share your story of a personal relationship with Jesus. (38)” This book is a great resource if you’d like to dig deeper into this topic.
I tried talking through my testimony and realized that I didn’t have a simple, clear way of explaining my decision to become a Christian. My version certainly wouldn’t make sense to a young child. I decided to organize my story using a method suggested by Staal.
Think about a word or phrase that describes your life before Jesus, what motivated you to follow Jesus, and a word that describes your life after Jesus.
Here’s my story told through this method.
Before: Abandoned. When I was 9 years old my parents divorced and I felt left alone to deal with my own problems and worries.
Christ: I didn’t want to be alone anymore and I learned God wants to have a personal relationship with everyone-including me. I asked Jesus to forgive the bad choices I made and accepted that He had paid the price for me so I could be in a personal relationship with God.
After: Never Alone. I still face problems and struggles but I truly don’t feel alone. God’s presence is very real to me. I trust and know that He is always with me.
Ready to give this a try? Write out your own version and share it with your kids sometime this month.