by Rebecca Dwinell
Groans echoed off the walls of the gym. Coach Jose started counting to ten again while his students laid on the floor doing another plank. He had already been working them hard for about half an hour at gym class. They moaned and complained that they were tired, and if Jose was not a firm teacher, they would have given up.
Kids might feel like giving up on the Christian life, too. They may be doing the same things over and over again—inviting their friends to church, reading their Bible every day, resisting temptation, trying to love their annoying siblings—and they’re getting tired of it. Maybe all the cool kids at school are the ones who misbehave and it gets old doing well. When they don’t see the fruit from their obedience, they can become discouraged, begin to complain, or start neglecting the good works God wants them to do. When you see these symptoms, God has given you the opportunity to encourage kids to not give up. Here are four ways you can help kids not grow weary of doing good.
First, show compassion by listening. How many times have you been encouraged by a listening ear? In the same way, you can talk with kids about what’s discouraging them. When you give them your full attention, you’re showing the grace and tenderness of Jesus. You may talk with them about a time when you felt like giving up on doing good. Some kids may appreciate a hug or a pat on the back. Pray out loud for them about whatever is causing them to become weary.
Second, you can take them to Galatians 6:9 and explain it phrase-by-phrase. The word “us” in the phrase “let us not grow weary” reminds kids they are never alone. There are others who are struggling too. The verse goes on to say: “…We will reap, if we do not give up.” Kids will get to see the benefits of following Jesus if they keep going. They might get discouraged if they don’t see the results of doing good right away, but remind them that, just like it takes a while for plants to grow, it may take some time before they see benefits of doing good.
The third thing you can do is show kids how to stand firm by memorizing and obeying God’s Word. Let’s say a kid grows weary of fighting against a habitual sin because it’s so easy to give in. You may help him learn the verse Hebrews 2:18. Together, you can sing and do motions to this CEF verse song called “Because He Suffered when Tempted.” You can find this and other verse songs on the free Christian platform for kids, unite.cefonline.com.
Maybe a child would prefer to make a craft with the verse on it and then hang it in his room where he can see it every day. Or maybe he would enjoy doing motions or playing a repetition game while he repeats the verse with you. Explain that, whenever he’s tempted to do something wrong, he can remember that verse, and ask God to help him since Jesus knows what it’s like to be tempted.
Last, you can help kids not grow weary of doing good by telling them about other Christians who persevered. Hearing Christian biographies can help kids realize they are not alone in what they face and also provide solutions for how to respond. Many lessons can be learned from the hardships other Christians have faced. Hudson Taylor, for example, shared the Gospel with Chinese people his entire life and only saw one convert, yet he faithfully persevered in ministry and the fruit came later.
Life’s not easy. All of us—including kids—get weary of doing good, but Galatians 6:9 promises we will reap if we do not give up. Maybe God has put kids in your life so you can help them reap those blessings one day. Stand with them and encourage them with God’s promises and your compassion.
You can find Bible verse song videos along with other great Bible content for kids on U-NITE TV at https://unite.cefonline.com.
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