The 8 Best Books About Heaven for Kids

books about heaven for kids

I was a children’s ministry director for nearly 12 years and was asked several times to recommend books about heaven for kids who had experienced loss. What follows are the ones I recommended back then, plus a few newer books. Also, if your child is directly dealing with the death of someone, this free resource has been very helpful to a lot of Christian parents! 1. Someday Heaven Larry Libby This is a book I remember vividly from my own childhood. The paintings showed me that being in heaven would be a joy, and that it was nothing to be afraid of. This is always my top recommendation as it’s also very well-researched and Biblical. I don’t remember reading all the text as a child, because it was quite long, but it provides some great talking points for parents. Check it out on Amazon. 2. Someone I Love Died Christine … Read More

How to Explain Death to a Child Biblically

how to explain death to a child, biblically

Learn how to explain death to a child Biblically through Scripture and simple phrases children can understand. This article will equip you to know what to say when your child has to deal with the hardest thing in life: death. His face crumpled behind his boy-man hands.  “I miss Great-Grandpa,” my 10 year old said, as tears streamed down his face.  “Being with him were some of my favourite times.” My son was only 5 years old when my Grandpa died, but the heartache was coming to the forefront suddenly, which is what grief does. It rears its head when we least expect it and are unprepared for the crush of emotions. I’ve experienced this myself on many occasions. Most recently, I was utterly shocked when I discovered a CD that I thought was a mix created by my sister. It turned out to be a compilation of songs that … Read More

The Christian Parent’s Guide To Encouraging Child Activism

child activism for the environment

Child activism may seem like a misnomer, but some kids are hardwired to be activists. Let’s guide their justice-minded hearts toward helping others! “I’ll call it Creative Kids For Compassion,” he stated at the dinner table. “Huh?” I had no idea what he was talking about. As usual. This child has a prolific inner life and his brain is usually on overdrive. “My new organization! We can sell our stories and raise money for kids who don’t have clean water.” Well, melt my heart and call me a puddle. That night, he sat down to finish writing a story, which he then proceeded to illustrate and type. His 6 year old brother was inspired to write his own story, and Creative Kids For Compassion was born.  Over the next several months, the boys sold their books both online and in person. Twice they stood outside for hours on a freezing … Read More

5 ways to help an intellectual child grow in faith

intellectual child

 When I was a teenager, our church had a little Christian bookstore in it. One summer I received a gift card for the store, so I went in and bought myself a big old concordance. It was so heavy I had to carry it with two arms. My friend thought I was crazy, but I knew it would help me understand the Bible better.  What Is An Intellectual? Some children share my deep curiosity and find it easy to dive deep into topics that interest them. (Read about my experience with being an Intellectual in this article on how to love God with all your mind!) The topics may not appear to be “intellectual” as an adult sees them, though. In fact, it may look more like an obsession with dinosaurs or bacteria, but children who love to learn often connect with God in the same way. These kids may … Read More

God gave us 5 senses…here’s how our kids can use them to worship God

Girl experiencing God through her senses

God gave us 5 senses for a reason, and we can help our kids connect with our unseen, untouchable God through their physical senses. Here’s how! I sat in the hard wooden pew with my family, our pet fish, and two stuffed animals.  At the invitation of my sister-in-law (who was training to become a Lutheran pastor), we were attending our first ever animal blessing service. The entire service was a shock to the senses.  Before the service began, my children gazed in awe at the amazing stained glass windows. We discussed which Bible stories were represented in the pictures and marveled at the colors. Before and during the service, cats meowed and dogs barked, while adults chuckled. Congregants sang with gusto as the pipe organ pounded out old, familiar hymns – poetry set to music. When we went forward for the blessing, the pastor chuckled as she dipped her … Read More

Helping Our Kids Engage God With All 5 Senses

Little boy with a promise rock in his pocket

Of the 9 worship styles for kids, a child that leans toward the Sensate style likely is always touching, hugging, sniffing and tasting things, maybe even at inappropriate times. Let’s talk about engaging God with all 5 senses to help your Sensate child connect with God on a much deeper level.  Our kids were made to engage in life using their senses. It’s how God made them. A baby doesn’t just want to taste her food – she wants to squish it and rub it on her face.  Some kids grow out of this need to experience everything with all their senses, but others don’t. Then, we tell them to sit still while we read the Bible, or close their eyes and fold their hands when they pray.  It’s unfair to these kids that we engage their senses in every other part of life, but not in connecting with God! … Read More

How to Help Your Child Grow Spiritually: 4 Concrete Ways

how to help your child grow spiritually

Learning how to help your child grow spiritually as a Christian isn’t hard, but will take a little thought and persistence! A recent study conducted by Lifeway found the top 3 common denominators in families where the kids continued in their faith as adults. They were Bible reading prayer and serving. All three of these can, and should be developed as faith routines in families, and will help your kids connect with Jesus in meaningful ways. They are not the only ways to grow spiritually, but they are foundations.  How to help your child grow spiritually: build a strong foundation Essentially, what you’re doing with young kids is creating a foundation of faith. You can also think of this as building a solid bone structure for a life of faith. Imagine one of those model skeletons that show up in biology labs across the globe: without those bones, our bodies … Read More

Raising Teens Who Know and Love God

A huge thanks to Monica Swanson, author of the upcoming Boy Mom book and homeschool mom of 4 amazing boys, for sharing her ideas on raising teens who actually love God. I have four sons, and two of them are suddenly more man than boy. (One will be 20, the other 18 in a few short months.)   There’s a lot I have loved about seeing my boys grow into young men, but more than anything I am grateful that they have thus far all personally chosen to follow Jesus.   Like:  get-up-before-the-sun-to-spend-time-with-Him follow Jesus.   Like: Lead Bible studies, share their faith with friends, and live intentionally for God’s glory kind of faith.  3 John 1:4 resonates with me now, more than ever:  “I have no greater joy than to know my children are walking in truth?”  Truly, there is: No Greater  Joy! It was always my hope that … Read More

How To Share the Gospel With a Child (and have them actually remember it!)

sharing the gospel with kids

Do you know how the share the Gospel with a child in the easiest way possible? With colors! You may have seen something called “the wordless book” or made beaded bracelets with the colors in Sunday School.  The colors are usually presented in this order: Black: Our sinRed: Jesus’ sacrifice for our sinWhite: Our new purityGreen: New growth in ChristYellow: For the hope of heaven But most of the color-presentations are missing something essential. They are missing God’s motivation. As a story-writer, I know that every character must be properly motivated. His/her actions have to have a reason, because that’s how things work in real life. We don’t do random things. Even if they may APPEAR random, they always have a reason. (Whether or not the reason is sane is another story altogether.) When we start our gospel presentations with sin, we have a motivation problem. Why on earth would … Read More

A Prayer For My Children To Know God’s Love

A prayer for my son

When I don’t know how to answer my child’s questions, I pray this prayer for my children. The question came out of nowhere. “How do I know God exists when I can’t see him?” asked my four-year-old son. My jaw dropped; I had never heard a young child ask such an existential question before. I hemmed and hawed and finally came up with an answer, and later that evening I remained extra grateful for the verse we had been praying over him every night at bedtime. A prayer for my children, right from the Bible: Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the … Read More