How to Raise Ministry Minded Kids (and a few resources)

My deepest, strongest prayer for my children, since learning we were first pregnant with Bennett, has been that they would be tenacious, unbreaking hearts for Jesus. That they would long to serve as Paul did, and that they would have hearts like King David.
Sometimes I wonder just what in the world I was asking for, because we sure ended up with some persistent little souls...If you read the blog yesterday, you would have gathered that I have been a little frustrated and stuck in my motherhood rut of yelling a lot. Typically due to chaos ensuing. PLUS, we have very strong-willed little people here.

I have to reign myself back in some days and remember, "ok, this IS what you prayed for - it's just a matter of helping them shape, mold, and understand that their (right now) annoyances are going to be their best strengths as adults, ESPECIALLY if they want to go into missions."

Bennett has frequently talked of going overseas - he often mentions, "Mom, what if I go to prison like Paul, and write the Bible there?"

My heart just break-melts at how sweet his thought is, and how true it could be.

Parker, our second, has taken example from his older brother and talks of flying missionary planes when he grows up. He and Bennett then burst into plan-making of who will fly who, and where they will go, etc.

It just makes my heart swell and I remember the prayers that I have prayed for them and I see them coming to fruition in the little dreams that they are making and I want to foster that so fervently.

How did my children come to being so missions focused? Not by my doing,that's for sure. I'm not going over seas, or doing anything amazingly activist on any country's behalf. But I have been gifted several ways of helping steer my children in that direction, and I wanted to share them with you.

Resources for fostering love of missions

First and foremost, the BIGGEST thing you can do is pray for your kids. It's the most impacting resource available and - BONUS - it's FREE!!! I began praying this for my children from the very beginning and while I go through bouts of forgetting that mission of prayer, I believe that God continues to work through any prayer. His heart especially is for those that don't know him and need someone to go to them. I can see Him honoring my prayers already in the wild stories that my children talk of.

Second, we focus our media around Christ. We drop in the frequent Disney/Pixar movie, but I have really moved away from them, ESPECIALLY many of the new ones because of all the trash that they put in them. We stick to Veggies in the House on Netflix, old classic Veggie Tales, Adventures in Odyssey, both the movies and the CDs, and Bennett's favorite, "the back then movies", the Torchlighter series from Voice of the Martyrs. It's so easy to let them binge on these kind of movies and TV shows because they are learning history, picking up enhancing character traits, and watching an active love of Jesus on them.

I also began looking into chapter books that I could read to the kids that focused on historical men and women that made a difference in the faith. I found a box series on Amazon, the Lightkeepers, they have a boys' version and girls' version. Each book (there are 5 in each series) has 10 boys or girls in it that helped change the faith. They are short stories so you can read one a night, or use them for school if you homeschool, etc. The kids LOVE them.

Other ways to foster missions in the hearts of your kids

If you have kids that are a bit older than mine (oldest is 6), encourage them to be reading missions-focused resources. Bring in some Voice of the Martyrs resources to your daily routine. Be real with your kids about the need for missionaries. 

Have missionaries over to your home for dinner to encourage conversation. Look for ways to help connect with and support local missionaries and missions. Be an example to your children of how important missions is.

I connected with the Lulu Tree and ended up doing graphics for them on a volunteer basis. My kids walk into my office while I'm working and ask questions about the people in the pictures and I choke up when I answer them. I can see how my simple act of clicking a few buttons and tapping a few keys is showing my boys that the people in other countries matter. They are our family if they love Jesus and THAT is the ultimate mission.

Encourage your teen to get involved with CEF either as a volunteer or as a paid, summer missionary. The three years that I did summer missions changed my life because it changed my faith. I will be forever thankful that my parents supported my idea to be a summer missionary.

And pray. Yes, I did mention this one before, but I thought it fitting to close with it again. It's so huge, to pray for the hearts of your children. Prayer and examples are the strongest factors to influence your kids with.

Are there other resources that you have found that your kids love and learn about missions from?

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