I consider myself a deeply spiritual person. I love God and knows He loves me. I read the Bible as well as any other religious books I can get my hands on, and I love asking questions. Even the hard ones. I have never received an answer that didn’t satisfy me, and in most cases that answer came from the Bible.
I know and love the living God, Christ Jesus. That is to whom my life and heart belong. He made me and therefore know my flaws. And He promises that if I search for Him, He will meet me wherever I am on my journey. Because He is The Creator, He understands my heart and does not take offence when I ask my questions. He provides the answers, always. Through knowing and following Him I have learned patience, perseverance, appreciation of beauty, wonder and understand that enjoyment and fulfilment will not condemn me.
Knowing and loving Christ makes me a better human being, and that is why my kids need to know Christ.Esrida Brits
It can be argued that all religions provide a foundation for morals and beliefs; religion helps shape us and determine what we see as right and wrong. Religion builds families and communities. It brings people together. Yes, religion can also divide us and tear us apart, but only if we chose to ignore or judge the perspectives and beliefs of others.
Religion and faith get bad reviews all over – from the popular media to the press. So many people shy away from affiliating with any faith that upon quick glance it might seem as if religion is dying out. I do not believe that to be the case. I think humanity has a deep set need and desire to believe in something bigger than themselves, to get comfort from an external being and to believe that they are protected by this powerful god. Religion is beautiful. This post is not going to try and convince you that my faith and beliefs are the only way to get you into heaven. I believe there are many roads that you can take. This is the road that makes sense to me, that grounds me and gives me a reason for living, and which I would like to take my kids on as well.
Having two beautiful girls who are not only strong in their knowledge of self but also strong in their knowledge of God is important to me because I believe having faith in a god leads to the following benefits:
1. Faith is what saves. Believing in a power bigger than yourself and your circumstances provides a feeling of eternalism. This encourages and emboldens the believer, who can then reach his or her own heights and successes. Furthermore, those pursuing a personal relationship with God tend to have improved relationships with themselves and with others, with better self-esteem.
2. Faith can grow. It is not a case of “having it or not having it”, rather of being faithful. Kids should know that almost nothing in life is simply black and white, we all live in the grey areas. And as with most other things in life, you need to feed your faith, exercise it and take it out for a spin every now and again. Believing teaches kids that life is a process, and you need to keep growing.
3. Faith can fail. If something can grow, then it can also wither and die. But, Christ says that when we are weak, He is strong. Believing teaches our kids that they have a support system, and even when they fall they will not be condemned and forgotten.
4. Faith is a gift. Although Jesus died for all of our sins, salvation is only offered to those who ask for it and take it. Believing teaches our kids that sometimes we have to ask for what we want and then do everything in our power to ensure we get it. And then once we have it, nurture and look after it.
5. Faith can move mountains. In God, nothing is impossible. Believing empowers our kids, giving them the strength and conviction to fight, to achieve and to conquer. Would you not be able to do anything if you knew there was an army behind you? Exactly.
6. Faith means to trust. If you believe in someone, it means you have trust in their abilities, expertise or skills. If you trust them, you will feel safe when you are with them. Believing in Christ allows kids to beat their fears, and to overcome whatever life throws at them.
7. Faith is protective. An army of hosts behind you, an Almighty God within you and the knowledge that nothing that you can do can remove you from His grace. That is divine protection! Belief makes kids feel safe and provided for – He provides for the birds, why not for you?
8. Faith results in action. God expects certain things from us, the smallest being living a good and successful life. The biggest being to win souls for His Kingdom. If you have faith, these actions will come naturally as you go about living your daily life. You will eat, breath, walk and talk to God without making it obvious or “salesy”. Believing gives kids a rough framework and pointers on how to live, giving them the best opportunity to be successful and great.
9. Faith is believing before you experience. We live in an experience-driven world, where instant gratification is not only a term but a way of life. Believing teaches our kids that sometimes we have to wait and be patient. This waiting can take its toll, but for kids cemented in faith, it will only serve to make them stronger. And then their testimony can be that sometimes, the best must be waited for, and when you then get it it will be far better than what you imagined or expected.
10. Faith is a decision everyone makes. Whether you believe in another god or no god, everyone has faith in something. For some, that faith is in themselves, and for others, in a deity that they consider to be powerful or great. Belief teaches our kids to make a conscious decision and to stick to it. To be able to defend their choice without judgement or condemnation. And to lead by example.
Having faith, being religious, following God. Whatever you want to call it, not only makes our kids stronger internally but also better equipped to deal with external pressures. It can protect our kids from peer pressure and the social problems that normally accompany it – drug abuse, alcohol abuse, sexual promiscuity, out-of-wedlock and unwanted pregnancies, and crime. Faith has also been linked to better mental health, a lower prevalence of depression and suicide, ultimately greater happiness. God saves, in this life and eternal life. I do not want to experience it by myself, and that is why I am looking after the two most precious gifts I could ever receive to the best of my abilities. And teaching them about God and Jesus is the best of my ability.