A child’s formative years are spent molding his mind under the beliefs and values of others. He naturally absorbs his family’s assumptions, skepticism, and belief systems.
They are doing what God entrusts them: teach and instruct him.
At some point, however, each person must evaluate these ideas and principles for themselves and accept or deny them as truth.
Adolescents cannot bridge the chasm between “What I’ve been taught” and “What I think” if they cannot independently assess their experiences.
In many ways, this is the stepping stone between being a kid and being a grownup.
Seeing your kid begin to question everything you’ve ever told them is a very distressing experience for any parent.
But if the generations can agree that self-reflection is a normal and necessary part of growing up, they can alleviate some of the hurt.
What steps can you take when your child walks away from the faith? Consider these recommendations.
Your child’s faith is not your burden. Controlling your fear is.
Hearing your kid declare they don’t believe in Jesus is painful. Some of you will surely be stumped about where you went wrong.
You might even be worried about your kid’s future in the Kingdom of God.
That, however, is the crux of the matter. This is how you feel about your child’s destiny and how you feel about yourself. Consider why your first reaction was focused on you.
Your first thought as a parent will be for your child’s eternal destiny in God’s Realm, but that is not your obligation.
Parents can contribute more stress by reacting anxiously to their children’s lack of faith.
This forces kids to pretend they share our conviction that they can handle our feelings or work against us. In either case, it reinforces their disbelief.
Your connection could be damaged if you react with your own concerns instead of listening to theirs first.
Worse, you won’t be able to show God’s mandate for unwavering love, even to those who have trouble keeping their faith. This brings us to our next point.
Love your child unconditionally, just like God the Father does.
The Bible teaches that professing trust in God and turning away from sin are prerequisites for receiving redemption. The affection of God, however, asks nothing of us in return.
God’s affection for us does not depend on us doing anything. We can go against any norms. We can reject God and His methods and live a life of disbelief, indifference, or even contempt.
It doesn’t matter how much we misuse our privileges and cause harm to those around us; God will still love us.
Why? Because nothing will ever sever us from God’s mercy.
“Neither the present nor the future, nor any powers…nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:38-39)
If God’s love does not demand anything from our part, neither should our affection for our children, and they must understand this. They require the divine, unwavering affection that we can give them.
Because God’s affection doesn’t depend on human achievement, adherence to rules, moral behavior, or shared beliefs, neither should ours.
Do not be a combatant, be your child’s ally.
You may think forcing your kid to believe in God is simple because you already know its importance.
Nothing could be further from the truth, and the more aggressive or hostile you become, the more your kid will resist.
Assure your kid that you and your family are a secure sanctuary for them during this time of uncertainty.
Your kid may not feel comfortable opening up to you about their concerns if you take an aggressive stance.
Don’t get indignant if your kid has doubts or questions about religion; the faith can withstand them.
Dialog is essential. Your child must know they can trust you enough to discuss their concerns and share their sentiments.
“I trust in you,” “I adore you regardless of what you say,” and “I’m on your side” are words that every person desires to hear.
According to studies from the University of Southern California, children whose parents allow them spiritual freedom are more likely to accept their parents’ religion as their own as adults than those whose parents are more strict in their demands for religious conformity.
Try and ask your child some questions.
Get curious about their present religious perspective. Try to get clarification without coming off as judgmental.
Open up a conversation with your kid by asking insightful inquiries like, “Why do you feel this way?” You should pay attention to your kid’s response without interfering or debating.
Pay attention to your kid and treat them with dignity. Share your experiences of self-doubt and how you overcame them. Let’s face facts.
Despite their convictions, even the most fervent believers have experienced uncertainty. Tell them you did as well.
You should also inquire as to how long these feelings have lingered. This question could reveal a great deal about your child’s current predicament.
Perhaps they have recently joined a new peer group, begun taking a demanding course, or reached a developmental stage when uncertainties are more prevalent.
Your kid might have concerns for a reason they’ve been harboring for a while, and they’ll need more time to get through them.
Additionally, you should constantly motivate your kid to pose inquiries, even challenging ones.
They will feel more comfortable asking inquiries if they are assured of their safety and pride.
Prepare a prayer for your child.
Pray. Although it may seem obvious, we must stress the importance of never underestimating the power of prayer.
Leverage it to shape your child and yourself in line with God’s grace and reality. Others decide to fast in concert with prayer.
While we can and should instruct and guide our kids and set limits for them, we can’t influence their innate sentiments.
Only God can give them a true desire to embrace Christ and the capacity to see him for all he is.
While we may feel dispirited at times, we are not utterly helpless.
We have the strength of prayer, God’s living word, and a powerful God we can depend on, whether our kids are small or adults, have tender souls or hearts of stone.
Our heavenly Farent delights in reshaping lives that appear hopeless—as ours undoubtedly did—to demonstrate his mercy and power.
Pray for your kid and believe that God will use their life for the Lord’s benefit, expanding and changing your soul.
A Prayer For Bringing Home Your Prodigal Child
Creator, each one of us is in desperate need of a rescuer. These children who have strayed away from you are lifted in our prayers, and we ask that they may find their way back to you in their misery.
We hope that the choices they are facing will ultimately lead to You being revealed to their world. Father, we’ve returned to you every time we’ve exhausted all other options.
We pray that all these youngsters who meander will be attracted to you soon and eager to have you redeem them. You are the safest haven, and we pray they will find you.
In Jesus’ Name, Hallelujah.
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