According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the Bible is the world's best-selling and most widely distributed book. This one book teaches many important life lessons. But many of the morals in Bible stories are not immediately evident. For example, when Samuel heard the voice of the Lord, is our first thought that he was hearing things? Is it easier to think about how frightened Jonah must have been as he sat in the belly of a whale than the spiritual message being taught? The real message lies deeper.
Teaching our children about the Bible and making Bible stories come alive can be difficult. Many stories may not spark any interest to your child, and many may not make much sense. Here are a few ways you can help your children understand and learn to love the Bible.
Learn them yourself
When helping your children understand and learn about the Bible, you need to know the stories yourself. Make it a habit to study the Bible on a daily basis. Take time to truly learn about each individual in the scriptures and think about what their story is trying to teach you. Additionally, don't just read though the stories or skim. Sit down and really dive deep into the meaning behind the stories, the history around the time period, the culture in the city the story takes place. Write about things you learn, inspiration that comes to your mind. The more you know about Bible stories, the more you can help your children understand and learn.
Many children are visual learners. They need to see the story take place whether through pictures, illustrations, animation or film. There are numerous visual aids such as videos and books that tell the more well-known Bible stories. You can also be a little more creative and make puppets, flannel boards or fabric books. Pinterest is also a valuable resource to find dozens of printable worksheets, coloring pages and crafts you and your children can do as you learn about the Bible stories.
Acting out Bible stories is an excellent way to help preschool and elementary age children learn about the characters and stories found within this sacred book. Make costumes out of towels, sheets, blankets and clothing. It is more fun if you get the entire family involved, and everyone plays a part in the story. This is a fun family night activity and an excellent way to learn about the scriptures.
If you have older children, you need to be a little more in-depth when teaching them about the Bible. Simply telling your teen a story may not be enough. You may need to tie in the story's relevance to our day and time. The stories in the Bible happened thousands of years ago, and it is easy for teens to have zero interest unless you can show how it relates to them. As you study the scriptures and read about the Bible stories, think about each story's relevance. However, remember that different people find different morals and guidance in the same story. Help your child try to find what he believes is relevant to our day and time now.
The Bible shouldn't be just another book. It has the potential to come alive and teach your children lessons that will guide them throughout the rest of their lives.
Courtnie is an editor for FamilyShare.com and has a degree in journalism. She has a slight obsession with running, newspapers and large fuzzy blankets. She currently lives in Idaho with her husband and two sons.