Yesterday as I was driving, a little voice called from the back seat, “Hey, Mom?” “Yes, Sweetie?” “What is Off Ice Max?” As a kindergartener, she’s really starting to read more and everywhere we go, she is putting letters and sounds together. Of course, Office Max seems like pretty normal lingo to adults. But she was trying to figure it all out.
Isn’t it that way with many words we use? “Scripture” seems a normal word to us as Christians but for young, developing minds, we must be sure to explain this is God’s Word, his letter to us. For today, I wanted to chat about the word “faithful.” It’s difficult to help our children become a word they can’t understand. How can we break down this word? What does it mean to be faithful?
English words have many Latin influences since the English language is based in Latin. Latin roots, suffixes, and prefixes are all important components in the English language. When we look at the word “faithful,” we can easily find the root word, “faith.” The suffix “ful” is simply an abbreviation for the word “full.” One easy way to define the word “faithful” to a child is straightforward. “Faithful” means full of faith. But if your kiddos are anything like mine, they are going to want to know “What does that mean?” How do we explain what it means to be full of faith?
I often tell my children that anything they want to be is shown by what they do. If they want to be kind, they must do kind things. If they want to be known as loving, they must show love in action. So being faithful, “full of faith,” means that faith is in action. It is a commitment to continually act by faith. When we are faithful to God and his Word, then we are consistently reading and obeying his word. When we are faithful to God’s house, we are consistently attending church. This is faith in action! Children love action, right? Check out these 8 ideas to put your faith into action and teach your child what it means to be faithful!
- Choose someone who needs prayer and remember to pray for this person each night at dinner or bedtime for one week.
- Check in on an elderly neighbor on a regular basis.
- Be a greeter at your church, committing to this ministry for a certain period as a family.
- Pick a courteous gesture, such as opening the door for others to enter first, and consistently remind one another of your “full of faith” gesture.
- Work your way through a devotional or Bible journal, spending time in God’s word each day.
- Discuss tithing with your child and give them the duty of placing the envelope or check in the offering plate each week for a month.
- Keep track of the number of weeks you attend church. Mark them on a calendar and try to beat your last record.
- Read a Bible story of faithfulness, choosing a character who exhibited courageous faith. (Hebrews 11 will help you!)
What does it mean to be faithful? It means acting out our faith so that others can see our faithfulness. The beautiful part of this action is that it is really the Lord working in us and through us. Enjoy this verse of meditation as we close:
God will make this happen, for he who calls you is faithful. 1 Thessalonians 5:24
How are you teaching your kids what it means to be faithful?