If you want your children to be faithful, active, productive Christians as adults, they need to be able to see God easily. Don’t worry. I am not talking about eerie visions or random voices. Your children need to be able to see that God is alive and active today. Not only in the world, but in the lives of your children as individuals.
One of the best ways for anyone, but especially young children, to begin to see God is in His creation. Romans 1:20 and Psalm 19 are but a couple of the passages where God tells us to look at His creation to understand Him and see Him. There are a lot of ways to see God in creation, but one of them you can do in your own backyard.
Go to a box retailer, help your child build a simple bird feeder or grab a pinecone, some nut butter and some birdseed. It doesn’t have to be fancy, but unless you want to spend a fortune feeding squirrels, an anti-squirrel feeder is worth the few extra dollars. Place it where you can easily see it from a window in your house. (Amazingly, once they get used to it, birds will allow you to place the feeder right next to the house.)
Encourage your children to watch the feeder and see how many different birds come to it. Changing the types of seed you provide can change the types of birds you see. Get a suet feeder and buy the hot pepper suet (otherwise other animals will eat it). Most likely you will begin seeing some woodpeckers. Plant some colorful flowers nearby and you may see hummingbirds.
You will probably find the birds are most active in the cool of the morning or the late afternoon. You will see more birds in the fall and winter than you will in other seasons. As you and your children watch the birds, talk about how much God must love us to give us the great variety of colorful and interesting wildlife He did. Discuss what an awesome Creator He is to create things as complex as a hummingbird or as awe inspiring as a hawk or an eagle. Teach your children if God loves the birds enough to make sure they get the food they need, He will take care of us.
So grab your purse or some wood and nails and get your bird area established. Give them a few weeks to find it and come on a regular basis (possibly more if it is summer when you do it). Then use what you and your children see to point your children to God. The ability to see God and understand His nature is an important building block of your child’s faith.