How can we teach kids to value others? The Bible says much about the value of life and loving others. The very first chapter has the foundational reason to value all people. Genesis 1:27 says, “So God created mankind in his own image…” Just being human automatically means having the image of God!
Talk to kids about some reasons for prejudice, to help them guard their own hearts.
God tells us to respect, care for, and view each other like He does. You can help kids see that while valuing others is challenging at times, we can do it when grateful for how God values us in spite of our unlovable ways.
Talk to kids about some reasons for prejudice to help guard their hearts. Obstacles to seeing others as God sees them include
- looking down on their social / economic status
- disapproval of their behavior
- our own pride
It’s important to help kids know that all people have equal value. In James chapter 2, believers are warned not to look down on other people or show favoritism based on wealth or social status. Kids might feel others are not socially acceptable because of clothing, hygiene, or looks. Frequently remind kids that those things are superficial and we need to constantly fight the media message that wealth or beauty gives a person more value. Use these conversations as teaching moments to build in your kids a habit of looking past outward status and seeing people as God sees them.
Kids might feel others are not socially acceptable because of clothing, hygiene, or looks. Frequently remind kids those things are superficial.
Sinful behavior is often related to how a kid views himself and whether he’s received God’s love and forgiveness. Do your kids know how to love and value others even when those people act wrongly? We don’t want our children to approve of bad behavior, but we also want them to see they can value and love those who don’t please God. Brainstorm practical ways to love difficult people, including replies that are soft answers like “Are you having a bad day? Is there anything I can do to help?” Help kids see that while valuing others is challenging at times, we can do it when we’re grateful for how God values us in spite of our unlovable ways. Pray often for a heart that feels compassion instead of anger.
Enjoy this story about a Good News Club teacher who had a financially disadvantaged and unruly child in her after-school club.
This boy finally understood his value because the Good News Club teacher explained she wasn’t paid to be there, she wanted to be there to tell him God loves him. His mother would also learn of her value to God through the teacher’s love.
Another big reason we’re tempted to value others less is pride. God tells us in Philippians 2:3 to consider others as more significant than ourselves and to do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit. To help your kids combat feeling superior to others, point to the creativity of God. He is the wonderful Creator who made each person unique—including their personality and talents. Remind kids that their talents are gifts from God, not something that comes from their own strength. Encourage them to praise God for the different gifts they see in others
Our families can see God draw people to himself if we value people like He does.
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