by Nancy Tichy, Author for KidZ at Heart International
All of Scripture reveals what God is like and what God does – his character and his deeds. We get to convey this to our children. Psalm 103:7 NLT goes, ‘He revealed his character to Moses and his deeds to the people of Israel.’ Scripture also makes it plain that we who love and follow Jesus are meant to reflect God’s character and, by our good deeds, shed light on his mighty deeds. We are meant to help others understand who God is and what God does. Exciting prospect, right? Awesome privilege.
This, in a ‘nutshell,’ is also the mandate for the Christian home. Children who early on learn this principle can make a very big difference in life in ever widening circles of influence. One way to get this point across is by sharing stories of God’s ‘mighty deeds.’ I invite you to start making a collection of these stories from your own personal ‘miracle’ events where God clearly showed up and from places far away. Here’s one from…
In a West African village, a religious leader named Sa’id became a Christ follower and began to share his newfound faith. His neighbors demanded that he abandon his new religion, but he refused. So the threats began.
Realizing his life was at risk, Sa’id began to pray about abandoning his home and escaping to a safer place. He finally decided to make preparations to leave. But the night before, a group of his neighbors surrounded his home and set fire to the thatched roof. Flames spread rapidly, and the noise of the animals staying near the house alerted Sa’id to what was happening. He and his family were nearly trapped in the flames.
Sa’id realized that half of his roof was already gone and flames were spreading rapidly. He had seconds to get to safety. Before he fled, however, Sa’id prayed, “Holy God, I don’t have anyone to come and help me now. Please help me!” Within seconds, the fire put itself out leaving only half of the roof destroyed and the house still standing. Amazed and in shock, Sa’id and his family spent the rest of the night there.
At first light, the neighbors saw the destruction and were sure that the family must have died in the fire. But Sa’id and his family emerged unharmed and the neighbors realized that the fire had stopped in the middle of a thatched roof. When Sa’id shared what had happened, how God had spared his family, animals and home, the whole village knew that the God of Sa’id was able to save them, too. Many became Christ followers, and the persecution of Christians in the area stopped completely. (This is a documented, true story.)
I read the book, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, (C.S.Lewis) in two sittings to our young kids one summer. It might have been all in one bedtime event, but my voice gave out. That was a long time ago, in a simpler day, but I’m convinced that kids still enjoy having stories read to them. Consider setting some time aside this summer to read to your kids – read with your kids. An amazing variety and amount of material exists today that illustrates God’s character and deeds. You may be sure our Heavenly Father will bless you for this effort.
“May I never forget the good things (God) does for me…” Psalm 103:2b