By Kelly Carr
If you grew up going to church, do you recall Bible songs you learned as a child? Likely “Jesus Loves Me” was part of your repertoire. Maybe you’ve sung “Jesus Loves the Little Children” or “The B-I-B-L-E” with your own children, grandchildren, or the kids at your church.
As I grew, I realized that many songs taught to me in my childhood were actually verses from the Bible. I can tell you the story of Ananias and Sapphira or Peter and John healing a lame man because their stories were put into song when I was young. When I memorized the song lyrics, I was memorizing God’s Word—and it has stayed in my mind for decades.
Dwelling on the Word
Songs are just one way to hide God’s truths in the hearts of children (and adults). As we delve into a two-part series about Raising Righteous Kids, the importance of teaching children the Bible cannot be overstated. Beyond memorizing verses, we also want children to understand the bigger picture of God’s love and salvation and apply his truth to their lives. (That’s a challenge for us too!)
I was excited that Betty Aldridge contributed “Help Children Study and Memorize Scripture” (page 8) to this week’s issue of The Lookout. Before her current role at East 91st Street Christian Church, Betty served in both children’s and family ministries; previously she was on the faculty of Manhattan Christian College and directed a teaching center. Her tips are timeless.
All of us, young and old, could probably use a little more time dwelling on the words of our Creator. When we take part in helping younger generations learn the Bible, we continue to cement his truths deeper into our own lives.
Sharing the Truth
Are you actively sharing the Bible and the love of Jesus with young people?
One way I get involved in the lives of kids is through Vacation Bible School. I grew up going to VBS, and I love seeing groups of kids get fired up together each summer as they laugh and sing and learn and craft their way through God’s Word.
In the past I’ve had the chance to help create Bible storytelling pieces for Standard Publishing’s VBS programs (vacationbibleschool.com). And every chance I get, I volunteer to be a Bible storyteller—showing up in character as a person from Scripture to tell children about the amazing, true events that shaped our faith. I’ve been Mary, Rahab, Ruth, Miriam, another Mary, and an innkeeper who met the good Samaritan.
My storytelling days have kept me digging into the Bible. In order to make sure I’m communicating correctly and clearly to young lives, I have to make sure I fully understand the stories myself. Teaching young ones is a great exercise in accountability.
I’m thankful for my family members and the women and men at my home church who taught me over the years. I can picture many of them right now, and it makes my heart happy. I have a foundation in Christ because relatives and church members took time to invest in me.
I hope you are continually investing in young lives. Whether it’s in your own family or in the adopted family of God, you can help another generation grow into godly believers.