Did you know that God still speaks to His people today? John 10:27 tells us that we hear God’s voice, we know Him, and we follow Him. Not only does He speak to us, He speaks to our children. Teaching our kiddos from a young age that they can hear the voice of God is invaluable. No matter where they go once they leave our homes, knowing how to hear God’s voice will be their greatest asset. So what are some practical ways we can do this?
1. Help with finding lost items.
“Mom, I can’t find my __________.”
This is a common sentence in our home of three small children. We try to have a place for everything, but inevitably between two floors, a backyard, and several rooms, something always gets misplaced. Instead of the frustration that usually follows scenarios like this, especially when rushing out the door, we use it as an opportunity to teach our children how to hear the voice of God. When they cannot find an item, we tell them to ask the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit leads us into all truth. Oftentimes He will give them a thought using words or pictures to remind them where it is and show them where to look. Other times they will simply be led to look in a certain spot, usually the oddest of places, and there it is. By this we show them that God leads us through our thoughts, and in the way we should go.
2. What did you dream last night?
Ever since my babies were young enough to utter their first words, I got them into the habit of telling me their dreams. At this age, my children usually dream of things they enjoyed doing during the day – playing in the park, jumping in a bouncy castle, dancing at a party. However as they get older, their dreams will evolve. It is important for our children to know that God speaks to us in our dreams. Many of man’s brilliant innovations throughout history have come from dreams; and many catastrophic events have been predicted, thwarted, or avoided as a result of dreams as well. By training them to recall and retell their dreams, they will learn to pay attention to His voice while they are sleeping.
In the simple act of praying, we can teach our children to hear His voice for themselves and on behalf of others. Ask your children if they sense God saying anything in particular when praying. Is there an encouraging word, an instruction, perhaps a picture they are seeing that could mean something to the person they are praying for. Always allow your children the opportunity to express what they feel God is saying in a particular situation. Do not pressure them or force them to hear or see something they are not; simply offer the opportunity to share. Encourage them to speak to God on their own, and to practice hearing God’s response to them. Prayer is a dialogue, not a one-way communication. Teach them that God speaks in impressions, thoughts, pictures, feelings, signs – the audible voice is the least common way. The more they are aware of the different ways God speaks, the more confident they will become with knowing His voice.
I hope these tips are helpful in your home as you train up your children in the ways of God. Remember, God will never say anything to violate His Word, so teaching your children the bible from a young age is super important as well.