Having the opportunity to lead a child to Christ is a tremendous privilege. But sharing the good news can sometimes shake even the most experienced children’s ministry worker!
It’s not usually an issue of belief or intention; often, it is a question of confidence. Will I say the wrong thing? I don’t want to manipulate a child into making a decision. How do I explain concepts that perplex theologians? Is it possible for a child to make such a life-changing decision?
It may seem easier to teach the Beatitudes, the fruit of the Spirit, or Jesus’ life and ministry. All wonderful and important. However, avoiding the message of salvation does children a great disservice if we make our teaching only about being and doing good.
Perhaps you are a parent or grandparent. Or maybe you serve in children’s ministry as a Sunday school leader or camp worker. If you have children in your life, you have the awesome privilege and responsibility of sharing the Gospel with them.
It’s not easy to explain the concept of sin or our reason for needing Jesus as Savior. The difference between right and wrong is increasingly hard to define—let alone teach—when the collective moral compass is so subjective.
Equally difficult is teaching decision-making to a child. If it feels good, can it be sinful? Am I wrong only if I get caught? Can something be right or wrong, depending on circumstances?
When we teach the Gospel effectively, we demonstrate compassion and sensitivity without compromising the truth that Jesus Christ took the punishment we deserve by dying on the cross for our sins, and that a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, the risen Savior, is the only way to eternal life.
Still, if a child tells you that he or she wants to become a Christian, would you know what to say? There is no exact formula, but sometimes having a guide to help you work through these questions is helpful!
Download, print and laminate this guide and tuck it into your Bible (after reading through it yourself, of course!). When you don’t have to remember “what comes next” or where to find certain verses, you will feel more comfortable.
Remember, while you are the one to lead a child to Jesus, you are not the key to a child’s eternal salvation. That is the work of the Holy Spirit; He is active is both of your lives!
Beyond Being Good session handout
This post is excerpted from a presentation given at the 2020 Awesome KidMin Conference in Winnipeg, MB. The video was recorded for the event and is re-posted with the permission of the Awesome KidMin Conference.