I was really excited to go to this breakout at the Orange Conference for three main reasons:
1. I have a preschooler.
It’s a fact. Evie’s not in school, so that makes her pre-school.
2. I want her heart to be captured by Jesus.
As Cass said, “If we don’t, the world will.”
3. A guy was leading this breakout.
Maybe I’m weird to think it’s unique that a guy is a preschool guru, but I want to join the ranks of guys who are passionate about pre-school ministry.
First off, I’m thankful that Cass shared his notes from his breakout on his blog here. That saves me a lot of work!
I was most touched by how accessible parents can really make the Bible for our kids. We can break the Bible down to essential truths and weave those into everyday conversation. I’m going with the big three: “God made me,” “God loves me,” and “Jesus wants to be my friend forever.” The main thing is that our kids realize that the Bible is the place to go to find out all we need to know.
I was touched by a couple of examples of the difference between getting a preschooler to memorize a verse to get free stickers and how to write God’s truth on their hearts. In one example, Cass talked about a kid who had actually comforted his family in the midst of a tornado because he remembered “be strong and courageous…don’t be afraid.” I’d love for Evie to know those kinds of things during the “tornados” of life. Also, Cass illustrated how to extend a Bible story from Sunday morning throughout the week. He talked about how his kids had learned about the miraculous catch of fish in church. While the boys where in the tub, Cass dumped all of their tub toys (so at least 3,000 items) into the tub to demonstrate how much God had provided. This giggly moment probably hammered home to those boys this story.
The pressure’s on (in a good way) because I was reminded that kids can smell fake– we’ve got to teach, model, and live what we’re telling our kids.
I think I was most touched by the idea that we really have to make the most of the time that we have; and the way that we can do that is by creating a rhythm. We can take advantage of the little moments in a preschooler’s life: play time, car time, bath time, and cuddle time. We can pray, talk, ask our kids what was their favorite thing of the day and what was their least favorite. The bottom line is that we have to capture our kids’ hearts (and no…not in some weird Indiana Jones “GOLIMAR” kind of way).
This had me thinking about the music that I listen to while I’m hanging out with Evie. And, although I’m not listening to gangsta rap with her around, I am kind of in neutral with what I was listening to: Raffi, Yo Gabba Gabba, or Disney stuff. I realized I can do better. I bought three CD’s that I’m going to review on here soon: Yancy Not Nancy’s “Little Praise Party: Happy EveryDay” [listen online] and the Orange peeps’ “Zapped” [listen online] and (my favorite) “Whoooo Loves You?” [listen online]. Evie loves these songs, and I love them too because she’s learning “God made it all,” that Jesus is a “present from heaven,” and that God is with her.
Bottom line from all of this is that I know it’s going to take work. Cass said it’s going to take work. But, at the end of the day, we want our kids to be oozing with a Biblical worldview. It was convicting and informative. I began to realize that being creative about how to reach our little ones is definitely a worthwhile investment of energy. Cass has great ideas on his blog. Also, I want to send a shout out to Amanda White’s blog for this because she’s really creative too (so you don’t have to be).
What sorts of things do you do (or have done) with your preschoolers to write God’s Word on their hearts?