Equipping Parents to Disciple

A parent’s perspective

by Casey Gibbons/ April 2, 2015

“Love is not rude!” said my two daughters in unison after I asked the weekly Sunday question, “What did you learn at church today?” Boom. They knew it. They had listened. The Bible lesson was on love and the girls got it. Mission accomplished. The kids’ ministry should be proud. But now what? 

As you well know, teaching a lesson at church is one thing, but leading children in the day in and day out application of the lesson for the rest of the week is an enormous task for even the most engaged dad or mom. Parents need adequate information to help guide a child from the lesson learned at church to the application in the home. In preparation for leading the families in your area of influence, remember to include a strategy of equipping parents to disciple their kids after the service is over.

Here are some simple, yet effective ideas from a parent’s perspective:  

  1. Place a sticker on each preschool child as they leave the class that includes the main lesson learned, Scripture, and discussion question. Although sending home a paper version can add value, oftentimes these are dropped, left in the car, lost, forgotten, or discarded before used. A sticker helps keep up with the information from the moment the child is picked up.
  2. Send out an e-mail, text, or church app update (better yet, do all three) with a brief description of the lesson as well as a couple of discussion questions that parents can talk about in the car or around the dinner table.
  3. Use the church bookstore, resource center, or website to reiterate the topics taught or to promote parenting books that would give insight for those raising children.
  4. Host parenting classes for a few weeks that include teaching on how to apply at home what is taught at church. This class could be scheduled during a Sunday morning small group time or during the midweek service. Use role playing to keep it engaging with a visual example of taking church lessons and applying them day in and day out. Teach your parents how to talk with their children about God, His Word and how biblical truth affects their lives.
  5. Have a connecting point from your lead pastor. Ask your senior pastor to take a brief moment to encourage parents as they leave service. He could ask them to discuss the children’s service with their children over lunch, to utilize car time to worship, or to spend moments before bed to read the Word with their children. Adults will respond to their pastor’s encouragement.

With these suggestions and other great ideas, the “now what?” question for parents can be answered as they are equipped for further discussion and discipleship with their child following services.

What new idea can you implement to strengthen parents in their role of discipler?