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A Parent’s guide to your child’s spiritual growth

Highland Kids 20 February

Thousands of parenting books available.
75 000 parenting books at our disposal.
An average of 10 new parenting books produced every day.
Overload. Parenting is important. Parents invest an enormous amount of money, time and effort into their kids’ formation.

3 Approaches to parenting: (George Barna)

Barna Group did extensive research with over 10 000 families.
In his studies he identified young adults who had mature spiritual authentic relationships with God and discovered what their parents did when they were children.
Discovered 3 parenting methods.

The church’s job or the parent’s?

Parent’s across the nation admit that one of the greatest benefits they receive from attending a church is having the community of faith assume responsibility for the spiritual development of their children.

Thinking trained professionals will provide spiritual guidance to their children- that gives them security and comfort.

George Barna: 4 out of 5 parents believe they have the primary responsibility for the moral and spiritual development of their children. But two out of three abdicate that responsibility to their church.

The abandonment of leading their children spiritually is evident in how infrequently they engage in faith-oriented activities with their young ones.

Typical week: Fewer than 10% of parents who regularly attend church with their kids, read Bible together, pray together (other than at meal times) or participate in an act of service as a family unit.

In short, most families do not have genuine spiritual life together. Found also that it is not disturbing to most of them because of two reasons:

How do parents reconcile the apparent contradiction between saying that they have the primary responsibility for the spiritual development of their kids and their practice of dropping off the kids for others to provide virtually all the spiritual instruction that their children receive?

The reality is unfortunately that the time spends at church (or the amount of time dedicated to spirituality at a Christian based school) is only a drop in the bucket vs. the time children spend at home with their parents and family. The family is by far the most important arena for a child’s spiritual development and soul care.
Even families who never attend church nor consider issues of spirituality and ethics in their decision making are spiritually forming their children. They are teaching their children that these things don’t matter in the same way that families who do seek out lives of faith teach their children that these things do matter.

What does the bible say about spiritual development of children?

The family that has the ability to spiritually nurture its children.

Family: The forming centre: Marjorie Thompson

The Refuge
The Storykeeper
The Servant
Tips for being a parent who raises a godly child:

George Barna: “Revolutionary parenting: Raising your kids to become spiritual champions.”


Spiritual Growth of Children- Trent, Osborne and Bruner. (Focus on the family).
Revolutionary Parenting- George Barna.
Transforming children into spiritual champions- George Barna.
Postmodern Children’s ministry- Ivy Beckwith