How to Help Your Kids Discover God’s Mission

Have you ever had to miss the end of an awesome movie?  It’s frustrating, isn’t it?  You’re into the plot, invested in the characters and can’t wait to see what happens next.  Then something unexpected interrupts you and pulls you out of the story, leaving everything unresolved.

No one wants to miss the end of a great story.  

Unfortunately, this is one of the biggest challenges in the church today.  Too many kids are only experiencing half of the story.  In our eagerness to introduce our children to a relationship with God, we teach them all about God’s love story.  And that’s a good thing. God’s story, however, isn’t just a love story.  It’s an adventure story too.

God’s on an adventure, a mission to restore this broken planet and redeem all that He made.  He’s bringing heaven to earth, and when we become a part of His family, we are invited, expected even, to join the family business.

Our kids desperately need to understand that the Bible is a story of relationship AND responsibility.  It’s not an either/or.  It’s a cause and effect.  Because of our relationship with God, we get to live out the responsibility of building God’s kingdom.

There’s a classic photograph from American history that drives this point home for me. It’s picture taken in 1963 of President Kennedy working at his desk while his son plays at his feet.  From the top up, it’s a perfectly ordinary presidential photograph, JFK hard at work in the Oval Office, but the bottom half of the photo tells another story. Two-year-old, John, Jr, is peeking out of a secret door in his father’s desk.  Because he is the son of the American President, he gets to play at the feet of the most powerful man in the world.   Continue reading

No Tiny Adventures Allowed

Superman family discipleship

When I was a kid, my day revolved around one thing. Action figures and lots of them. Han Solo. Batman. G.I. Joe. Didn’t matter which hero. As long as I had a couple of action figures in my hand, I never got bored.

I spent hours living out countless tiny adventures. I fought massive battles, thwarted bank robberies and saved the galaxy every day. These struggles seemed epic in my head, but, of course, in reality, they were played out in a world of four-inch plastic heroes.

When you’re a child, there’s nothing wrong with living little adventures. As our kids grow up, however, it’s our responsibility to teach them to live for so much more.

We all know too many adults (ourselves included) who waste their lives on small quests. Money. Approval. Achievement. Fame. These are the tiny adventures that dominate so many of our lives.

The Bible teaches us that God is on an adventure, and there is nothing small about it. In John 5, Jesus said that his Father is always at work.   He is relentlessly on mission to restore his people to relationship with himself. He has come to reclaim his fallen creation, vanquish evil and bring heaven to earth.

That is one big adventure!

And the best part about it is we are invited to join it. Here are four simple things you can take to get your family involved in God’s big adventure today:

1. Set the example for your kids. Ask yourself, “What are my kids learning from my example about what’s most important in life?”

2. Choose to join God’s big adventure daily. Every morning, ask yourself the question posed by Henry Blackaby in his book Experiencing God, “Where is God at work and how can I join him there?”

3. Get your kids involved in God’s adventure while they’re young. Pray about who you can serve as a family and who God is bringing into your life to love. Look for opportunities to help your kids practice generosity and hospitality.  Take holy risks together.

4. Spend time in the Bible learning about God’s big adventure as a family. In every family devotion time, talk about what the Bible teaches us about what God’s up to in the world today and how you can join him.

If you’d like help unpacking this with your family, check out my new family devotional series, God’s Big Adventure, releasing in July from 3DM Publishing. Over three short devotional books, we’ll walk through the whole story of Scripture through the lens of how we can help our families join God’s adventure every day.

Of course, you don’t need any books to get started.  So, what are you waiting for?  Go ahead and take a step.  Action figures are great and all, but action families? Way better.