I will never forget the Sunday I received the phone call telling me I had become a mother. Like the prayers of multiple women of the Bible who had been barren, my prayers were answered with an incredible gift.
God created my daughter on purpose for a purpose. I spent hours in the NICU holding this amazing wonder at barely three pounds, wondering, “God what plans do You have for her? What plans do You have for me?” Then my words became a plea, “God, help me to show her You.”
From the moment my daughter was born, the story she heard repeatedly was how God answered our prayers and that she was created by Him on purpose, for a purpose.
I wish I had a husband like Zechariah, who was given all kinds of details about God’s plan and purpose for my child by an angel of the Lord. I was not that fortunate, but I did have an essential resource, His Word.
Whether as a parent or children’s ministry leader, we can all relate to how vital it is that children know they were created by God on purpose, for a purpose. When we lead children to know God, they can discover their identity in Him.
They are then rooted in a relationship with Him. We are introducing them to a path to discover God’s purpose for them. By telling them that they were created to be part of God’s big story, we can set them on this path.
God Is the Beginning of ALL Things!
Nothing is more important in our spiritual lives than knowing God and being known by God. In this topsy-turvy world that offers competing truths, we point kids to God’s Word that provides absolute truth.
What can we do to make God known?
- Ensure curriculum and resources focus on revealing God, His character, and His incredible love and sovereignty.
- Create environments that uphold and display God’s truth in our spaces.
- Focus on establishing a foundation for learning His Word.
- Cultivate relationships with Jesus through leaders sharing personal faith stories.
A child can discover they are known by God when these areas are focused on.
Identity in Christ
The second marker on this path of purpose is having an identity in Christ. School, TV, friends, and social media continually tell our children that who they are is not good enough. They hear that they need to be someone different.
Culture’s lies and false identity labels distract from God and the truth that we are image-bearers of God. Ephesians 1 says we are chosen, adopted, redeemed, and sealed with God’s love!
Scripture speaks powerful truth and blessing that IDENTITY in Christ allows them to stand firm against destructive counter identities.
How can we pour into a Christlike identity?
- Speak words of blessing from Scripture over your children.
- Call out God’s character you see on display in your children.
- Identify Scripture that speaks to God’s call and purpose.
But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession.1 Peter 2:9a
Rooted in Scripture
When children learn to identify with Christ, they become rooted in His plan to bring light into a world that is not as it should be. His living Word becomes the source of encouragement and calm in their anxiety and fears.
In their anger and frustrations, it becomes a counsel and release. They know that God fights for them and is with them.
Engage kids in Scripture memorization so that they can recall verses and lean on God in all circumstances. While many curriculums have Scripture memorization as part of the lesson, we know time is limited on Sunday.
Building a family Scripture tool is a great way to target building up the family to practice Scripture memorization together.
Scripture Memorization Tools
- Consider your age groups and select key verses you not only want them to memorize but understand and then build a booklet. Scripture memorization can be a marker in spiritual development.
- Create a vocabulary booklet to help parents and kids understand definitions of keywords found in Scripture.
- Incorporate multiple tools and ideas for Scripture practice. This might include writing it on a mirror and erasing a word a day, or flip cards with one word on each.
- Prompt families to submit videos of them speaking the Scripture together before moving on to the next one.
- Supply Aha! cards so each family member can talk about how this verse impacted them in their daily life.
- Encourage memorization with small rewards. Focus on building a conversation on how Scripture provides them with purpose and understanding.
- Discover ways to have families who memorize Scripture be part of your service by describing how it roots them in their relationship and knowledge of God.
Remembering Scripture allows us to reflect on the truth that we are not alone. We are called as God’s children to place our trust in Him to lead and direct our hearts, minds, and souls.
When children learn to know His voice and obey His voice, they can take steps towards His purpose and plans for their lives.
Journey of Purpose
Children grow into teenagers and teenagers grow into young adults who continue exploring God’s creation for purpose. Still, when they know Him, have an identity in Him, and are rooted in His Word, they will be led on their journey to purpose.
My small three-pound miracle has grown into a young woman. She seeks God daily to remind her she was created for His purpose. She knows her story begins and ends with God.
My daughter identifies with God. Those who know God are helping her down a winding path. Still, she is searching on the path created by God to know the purposes that God ordained before her birth.