Elevate Kids to Your Level

christian parenting family Jul 08, 2024
elevate kids christian parenting

“When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things.”

- 1 Corinthians 13:11


 

Introduction

Derek and I love to attend conferences each year on a variety of issues, but occasionally one of us will strike out without the other. In April, I had the opportunity to attend Time of Grace’s Women’s Conference for two days, and it was a wonderful experience. And one reason it was so enjoyable is because I brought my oldest daughter with me.

 

Our Story

Leah was delighted when I invited her to come along. She’s at that in-between age where the teenage years are just around the corner: not a little kid anymore, but not an adult either. A lot of moms will tell you that the twelve-to-thirteen transition can be rough, and it’s important to me that she and I keep a close relationship. I thought this could be a perfect opportunity to get some one-on-one time with her and make some memories with intention. This isn’t the first time we’ve brought our kids to a conference, but it was the first time we made it a mom and daughter retreat.

Leah and I absolutely loved being together, especially during the worship time. It was a great opportunity for us to be encouraged by other Christian women and get to know people from all over the country. Conversing with new people is a skill, and I got the chance to model for Leah how to do it; she did very well talking with the ladies that we met! After the event, she told one of her friends all about it and shared some of the encouragement she had learned. It was especially sweet for me to hear her perspective; what stuck out to her during the main talks and breakout sessions, and what she found most meaningful. Both of us came away with a fresh conviction about the importance of studying God’s Word, both in private and in community.

 

What We’ve Learned

Kids are capable of so much more than we give them credit for! While schools and counselors can often over-emphasize the importance of friends, we’ve found that our children like to spend time with Mom and Dad. And honestly, we love spending time with them! Making the intentional choice to be together at conferences like this shows our kids that they’re valuable and important to us, and that we believe they’re capable of handling adult-level information.

Bringing our kids along to experiences like this also allows them to interact with other adults and see how we communicate. They get to see the importance of living our faith in community with other believers. They have seen us share our faith with others, and it helps prepare them to go out and let their light shine in the world as they grow up. We end up talking with them about more adult topics and they have the opportunity to ask questions and think deeply. Perhaps most importantly, we get to walk them through those topics from a biblical worldview and discuss them as a family with an open Bible.

 

Conclusion

As our children begin to leave the years of childhood behind, it is vital that we help them catch a rich vision of the Christian life in a way that is accurate and mature. Some youth conferences are shallow and focused on an emotional experience, but we want our kids to be challenged in a deep and biblical way. We are excited to bring them to many more conferences like this in the future!

 

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