God has blessed Jodie and I with three wonderfully unique kiddos.
We have ColeTrain, who is 13, and he is creative, entrepreneurial and a make things happen kind of a kid!
We have Little Miss. Kylie Faith, who is 12, and she is an absolute blast, silly, funny and sees everything in black and white.
And then there is Tifton Jack (AKA…THE JACKHAMMER), who is 10, and he is the one and only introvert in Team Sprad. Tifton is quiet, wise, discerning, creative and a very unique young man.
It’s taken me several years, but I have finally realized that a “one size fits all” approach to parenting does not work when you have such differing gifts and unique personalities.
I have also learned that a “one size fits all” approach to Jesus doesn’t work so well either…
This honestly has been difficult for me to process since I have Jesus burned into me at a very young age. My experience with Jesus was flannel graph Sunday Schooll, followed by “Big Church”, Wednesday night “Solid Rock Youth Group” and Thursday night visitation. Can I get an AMEN!!?!
So my oldest son comes home from church a few years ago and tells me, “Yeah dad, I love Jesus a ton, I just don’t like church very much. I don’t need all the lights, dances, cheesy songs and people trying to make Jesus look cool.”
And so…what do you do with that one!!?!
Then my daughter is the get to church early, join a small group, t-shirt wearin, WWJD bracelet sportin, YoungLife attendin chic! The more “stuff” she can attend and do for Jesus…the more spiritually mature she grows.
Then there’s the JackHammer. I love this dude! Tifton is my kid that will sit during worship, head bowed, eyes filled with tears and sobbing because Jesus loves him so much!!
So why am I writing all this…
I just want to encourage parents to pay attention to how Jesus’ connects with their kids.
Listen to your kids talk about Jesus, listen to what inspires them, listen to what convicts them, listen to them pray, listen to what they like, listen to what they don’t like, listen to what they think is Jesus garbage (redirect that if necessary), listen to their heart, listen to their joy’s, listen to their passions and listen to their cry’s.
If you listen to them long enough, you might see that they connect with Jesus differently than you do. They may not “love” church services like you, but they “love” the church (God’s people). They may not “give” like you, they may not pray like you, they may not read God’s Word like you. But it’s interesting that they love Jesus as much as you!
Parents…please don’t give your kids an outdated, cookie cutter Christian kid template to follow, don’t make your kids blindly adhere to artificial Jesus rules, spiritual hoops and made up doctrines.
Teach your kids to follow HIM. Fall in love with HIM. Listen to HIM. Irrationally obey HIM. Be with HIM.
Have you pushed your kids away trying to CRAM Jesus down their throat? Would love to hear your story.
If you liked this post, you should also check out…
- Facetime, Faceoff & Facedown
- Top 10 Signs Your Not The Spiritual Leader In Your Home
- 5 Things Parents Do To Destroy Their Kids Faith
- Teach Your Kids To Hear The Voice Of God
- How To Impact Your Kids For Christ