I am still looking for material to teach our children that presents the whole counsel God. Any suggestions? I will start another post about it soon.
There is a book we have used for a long time... I think it's called "Leading Little Ones to God" which is very good. It's geared more for kids probably 6 and 7 or under.
You can find it here:
Because it isnt in your face "turn or you're going to hell!!" and wasnt written by Spurgeon, some of you more spiritual folks wont like it... but for us redneck hillbillies it does just fine!
(that was humor...)
We use it, and y'all know how I am about truth and substance.
| 2008/8/25 16:24|
This site has many excellent Christian books for instructing children in the ways of our Lord.
It has the one Krispy suggested...and one by Charles Spurgeon :-D
You can check them all out [url=http://www.graceandtruthbooks.com/young_children/default.asp]here[/url]
| 2008/8/25 17:49||Profile|
i would like to ask you to check out a sermon series on this site given through denny kenaston called the godly home series. it will bless you, i'm certain of it. this is a sermon series for parents, and it will help you to know some really Biblical principles on teaching them.
also, i taught preschool children for several years, and they really do understand much more than our society gives them credit for. teach them the truth. you know your kids and how they learn. just remember that you are teaching individuals. one of them will learn very differently than the next. if you guys would like to discuss specific creative ideas for teaching children, feel free to pm me and hopefully i can help. but first, i recommend you check out some of the sermons in that series...it is wonderful.
be blessed in the name of Christ, brethren.
| 2008/8/25 18:40||Profile|
Oh my, this subject of relying on cute humor to engage children and teenagers, (and even adults) is an overlooked topic. How many spend years recovering from unbelief in scripture due to their Noah's ark bath toys?
I just had an important conversation with a young man this weekend, which was also a good reminder for myself. This youngster has a clever quick wit, and people like him for that. Yet I warned him, "Humor can seem to help make friends, but be careful not to become the comic. Don't build relationships with your jokes. Jesters can't be leaders. (Thankfully, he understands that.)
(edit: While a little silliness isn't worth caring about, I think always relating to children with cartoonish antics is a misguided policy. Perhaps this issue belongs in the same category as the "What Fire..." thread currently being discussed. )
Can't agree more here.
We hear so much about " parents are responsible for teaching the Word to their children ". While I have often wanted to tell them this "please don't teach my kids at all". Why set up these classes on the one hand and tell the parents to take responsibility on the other. Whoever teaches is and will always be doubly responsible, kids or not.
When I was a young mother, it was serious enough to teach my kids at home to reverence God without having to re-teach them when they come home from all the bubbly jumpy, candies passing, gum chewing nonsense they learn from these "churches". What a battle. Song and dance, muppets and puppets, cartoons.....
In my view, if these places can only tell the parents to teach the kids to sit still and be quiet each Sunday before a solemn God is a God-honoring lesson enough already.
sigh..call me proud
| 2008/8/25 20:52||Profile|
Humbly before God, I would like to add, for all you Godly young parents out there, please use only the Word in introducing our GOD to your children.
Children, in the long run, respect our GOD far better and take HIS Word far more serious when we do that. By using substitutes, one is undermining the God-given spirits in the children's capacity to know HIM , and is almost as telling them that our BIBLE is a boring book at the same time.
We are a living testimony in this regard. I raised my girls with the KJV and IT alone, and with absolutely nothing else, as soon as they turned 3. A few verses at a time.
Pampering our children in this regard is most unnecessary. Furthermore, bribing our children with reward tickets and toys to memorize Scriptures, in my mind, is most insulting to God. If God does not charge us for His Blood, why do we encourage our children to "charge" Him for learning Him?
So many of these bible camps and programs instill nothing yet furthering a spirit of greed and pride via the use of Scriptures in our kids. This just doesn't make any Godly sense.
| 2008/8/25 21:23||Profile|
| 2008/8/25 21:36|
I believe there is something fundamentally wrong with allowing animated pieces of fruit and vegetables to convey the earliest rudiments of the gospel to a child, and it has nothing to do with being inconsiderate of teaching children at their own level - no one is saying that you turn the full gospel cannon on them ala Whitefield in Boston or Wesley on his father's tombstone.
But you don't present Mickey Mouse either. The makers of Veggie Tales put a lot of thought into the production, to create animated characters resembling fruits and vegetables with big eyes and silly voices to allure their attention. These are psychological concepts found in secular marketing, people go to school for graphic design to learn the colors and sounds that arrest the attention of a certain demographic. Like fast food chain restaurants, the bright red, the bubbly plastic, the bright neon, the toys. McDonalds with Ronald the clown, and the old characters like Grimace and the Hamburgler, etc. These are specifically designed with careful psychological implications to trigger the desired response in the eyes of the young beholder. One of the earliest efforts - and surely the most notable - in causing children to make a connection with an undesirable inanimate to a desirable animate is found in Popeye and his spinach. With Veggie Tales you have the gospel as the spinach and the vegetable as the Superhero.
You may be laughing, but there is a truth behind all this. I do not doubt for a minute that an influence birthed in behavioural analysis had a role to play in the design of the Veggie Tales characters. I am not saying there's a conspiracy behind it all; I'm only saying that this is the product of man's reason, independant of God, of a synthesis of worldly concepts meshing with spiritual truths to arrive at the end result of fakeness and entertainment embroided with truth.
Now, if we relegate the gospel in children's eyes down to cereal box cartoon level, the sugar they ingest along with the gospel will harm their spiritual teeth later on. Intuitively they will learn to link the gospel on the same mentality level as with Cocoa Puffs and Big Bird and Ronald MacDonald. It will condition them to anticipate entertainment and laughs to lace the climatic, quasi-seriousness of the gospel message the makers endeavor to convey in each episode.
This can have terrible consequences later when they get a bit older and are ready to be brought to the accountability of the gospel and sin. They will nod and remember what the fat, juicy tomato said (even though they will be beyond it, maturity-wise), yet the words and antics will have placed a deeply indelible etch upon their own psyche. They will listen and nod, and agree with what God says, but not enter into a serious relationship with the Lord that will safeguard their souls from other worldy entertainment and Hollywood and Disney and whatever else. Remember, Veggie Tales and Disney and Telly-Tubies are all subspecies of the same kind of organism: namely, children's entertainment. The principles of God have thus become a conglomerate of colors, funny faces, Pirate battles, and fish-slappers. In later years the Lord will have to remove much of what this imagery is associated with, and recondition their minds and spirits to accept the true seed of His Word which is able to transform, lead to repentance and the new birth.
Paul Frederick West
| 2008/8/25 21:54||Profile|
| 2008/8/25 22:19|
Brother Paul... do you have children?
| 2008/8/26 7:15|
Please understand, folks... I am in no way saying that we need to dumb everything down for kids. But we also have to have some concept of the developmental stages of children.
At our house we have family devotions in the morning and before bed. We read scriptures. We read from the book I suggested in an earlier post. Sometimes we act out Bible stories.
Things like Veggie Tales or Puppets are extremely peripheral, as they should be. I dont think anyone here is suggesting that VT should be the only exposure to the gospel that a child ever gets.
My 5 yr old has 47 verses of scripture committed to memory. My 12 & 13 yr olds are memorizing whole chapters, and are working their way thru the "Route 66" curriculum. There are some serious things going on in our house. It should be this way in EVERY Christian home.
I would agree that if the only exposure to the gospel is thru a cartoon... those parents ought to be smacked around a little.
I disagree that Veggie Tales is some commercially motivated conspiracy to corrupt kids ideas on God. Most of the Christian homeschool kids we are around all the time watched VT when they were little... and most of these kids now are mighty warriors for God. Most have been to the mission field... some are even street preaching at the age of 15. Not because of VT, obviously... but at the same time, VT didnt corrupt their belief in God. In fact, I believe VT probably taught them some very valuable and godly lessons.
Personally I find it rather humorous that Christians can get as upset as they do about Larry the Cucumber. With internet pornography, drugs, secular music, TV and everything else that society throws at our kids... Christians are mad about Bob the Tomato.
| 2008/8/26 7:27|