Maybe you’ve been saved since you were a child, or maybe you recently gave your heart to the Lord. Whatever your situation, you might face a little bit of anxiety when it comes time to talk to your child about salvation.
It’s a big moment! And, while many "churched" kids may receive salvation in children’s church, it’s important for you to take an active role in your child’s salvation experience. It may be tempting to leave talking about salvation for your child’s Sunday School teacher or youth group leader, but you can play an active role!
Our goal at Ultra Kids is to empower you to lead your child spiritually and to be prepared to lead your child to Christ if the situation arises. God set up the family to be the structure where kids are influenced, lead, and nurtured. While pastors and churches are a great resource, you have the most influence in your child’s life.
When that influence is used to share spiritual truths with your child, you can form a deeper bond with your child and experience the joy of leading them to salvation! While there's no step by step process to guarantee your child will receive salvation.
How do I know my child is ready?
Unless the Holy Spirit reveals it to you, you can't know.
Every child matures and comes to an understanding of the Lord at different times. Some 3-year old children may be very bright and spiritually aware, while other kids may not fully understand their own sinful nature until they are in elementary school. Your job is not to simple “get” your child into saying the sinner’s prayer. Instead, it is to foster in them a love for the Lord.
Out of this love will come a genuine salvation. It’s our job to teach, and the Holy Spirit’s job to convict. And he will! If you think your child might be ready, explain salvation to them and see if they understand and what Jesus did for them. The Holy Spirit will do the rest!
What do I say?
You don’t need to know a ton of theological terms, and you don’t have to read from a script (though, those do exist, if you want to use one). You just need to know the important points.
Point out that we have all done things that aren’t good (Romans 3:23), but Jesus lived a perfect life! When he was an adult, people who didn’t believe he was God had Him put to death on a cross. But Jesus didn’t stay dead! He defeated death by coming back to life again, and now He is with God. His death and resurrection means that when we ask Him to forgive us of all the bad stuff we’ve done, He forgives us and makes a place for us in heaven (Romans 10:23, Romans 6:23).
During the Easter season, there’s a great resource for parents called “Resurrection Eggs.” Each egg in this 12 piece set tells a different part of the Easter story and serves as a way to talk through the Easter story with your child!
For the sweet-tooth in your family, you can also make Resurrection Rolls, which explain that Jesus didn't stay in the grave!
Even if you aren’t sure if they are ready to receive Christ, these activities are great ways to start a conversation about salvation with your child. They also give you an opportunity to lead your child to receive Christ at the end!
When you pray with your child, simply follow the ABCs of salvation. Have your child admit that they have sinned and ask for forgiveness, declare that they believe that Jesus died and rose again, and confess that Jesus is the Lord of their life. It’s that easy!
How do I know if they’re really saved?
Just like any other saved person, a child who has accepted Christ will show a love and a desire for Jesus and the Bible, and a desire to resist sin in their life by being kind to those around them and obeying their parents.
Of course, a 6-year old’s attempt to resist sin will look different than a 14-year old’s, which will look different from a 30-year old’s. But just like we evaluate our own walk with God based on the fruit it produces, we can evaluate our child’s walk with God based on their fruit.
Of course, a period of bad behavior may disappoint us, but it does not mean our child is necessarily unsaved. A gentle (or perhaps firm) discussion about their behavior and a prompt to spend more time in the Word of God and in prayer may be all they need to get back on track.
What if they don’t receive?
First, don’t panic. As we noted earlier, every person has their own unique walk with the Lord and every person will come to an understanding of salvation at a different point in time. They may just need to get a little bit older, or they may need to hear the story a few more times.
Trust the Holy Spirit and pray for your child! Pray that God would open their heart and mind to understand the free gift of salvation. Pray that they would have ears to hear (Matthew 11:15) and understand all God has for them!
Finally, keep showing them what it means to be a Christian. Part of what compels the lost to receive salvation is the testimony of the Christians around them. Live out your faith. Show your child that prayer works. Show your child that you read the Bible regularly and enjoy going to church to learn about God. As your love for God shines brighter and brighter, they will be drawn into the light.
As you take your place as the spiritual leader of your family, ask God for wisdom and trust that he will give it freely to you! (James 1:5) Trust that God will lead you so that you can better lead your family. Even if it feels like your efforts are not producing any fruit, you will not go unrewarded.
So, let's not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don't give up. Galatians 6:9
God has given us the responsibility to be parents, so he will surely equip us to raise our children physically and spiritually! Keep praying, keep trusting, and keep believing that your child belongs to God and will do many great and mighty things for Him.