Editor’s Note: The following is a report on the practical applications of Dr. Kara E. Powell and Dr. Chap Clark‘s book, Sticky Faith: Everyday Ideas to Build Lasting Faith in Your Kids, (Zondervan, 2011).
Tragically, many people who grew up as Christians end up drifting away from the faith once they become adults. Parents are heartbroken to watch their children leave behind the faith they’d hoped would become a lifelong priority. Meanwhile, God’s great purposes for people He loves go unfulfilled.
But it doesn’t have to be that way for you and your kids. You can help them develop “sticky faith” – faith that lasts and grows their whole lives long. Here’s how:
Recognize how important your own spiritual example is to your children. The way in which you express and live out your faith has a greater impact on your children’s Christian walk than any other factor. So pray daily that God will help you become the person He wants you to become, so you can set the best example of faith in action for your kids. Make your relationship with God your top priority in life.
Pray for your kids often. Regularly ask God to strengthen your children’s faith and draw them closer to Him.
Teach your children what it means to trust Jesus. Help your children discern the difference between placing their trust in Jesus and trusting in something lesser, such as their instincts or their desires. Encourage each of your kids to focus on the quality of their relationship with Jesus rather than in how righteous they can make their lifestyle. Focus on relationship instead of rules. Tell them that God cares much more about who they’re becoming as people than He does about what religious activities they do. Your children will eventually get burned out on religion, but pursuing close relationships with Jesus will give them ongoing excitement and peace, which will motivate them to stick with their faith.
Love your kids unconditionally. Ask God to help you love your children in the same way that He loves them: unconditionally. Modeling that love to them will help them understand and appreciate how God loves them, while also inspiring them to love Him back.
Click here to read the rest of this article: Help Your Kids Develop Faith that Lasts, Christian Parenting and Family.