Archive | Faith Development

Kids, Dinosaurs and God

Kids, Dinosaurs and God - Parenting Like HannahIf you have a young child, you are probably in or about to enter the dinosaur phase. It’s a lot of fun for kids to learn about those often giant and unique animals. Unfortunately, some atheists have tried to use dinosaurs to convince people Christians hate science and are basically uneducated rubes. Your child may even have a teacher or professor at some point who will actually say “Christians are idiots, because they don’t believe in science.” I know I did.

We often forget science, like every other field, is highly competitive and politicized. Many scientists are under pressure to “publish or perish”. Scientists, like those in other fields, all want to be viewed as experts. For many, this makes them feel as if they must state theories as absolute truth in order to avoid uncomfortable questioning about their research. Those with theories opposing their own must be “destroyed” in order to protect their own reputation and theories.

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Fun Activity Teaching Kids About Satan’s Tricks

Fun Activity Teaching Kids About Satan's Tricks - Parenting Like HannahTeaching kids about Satan can be a bit tricky. You want your children to be watchful and prepared, but you also don’t want to make them overly fearful. Younger children can usually understand there is a being we can’t see named Satan or the devil. They can begin to grasp that Satan tries to trick them into disobeying their parents and God.

Older elementary aged kids need to begin learning some of the most common tricks Satan uses. The story of Jesus being tempted in the wilderness is a good place to start (Matthew 4:1-11 and Luke 4:1-13). Older readers might also enjoy reading The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis. Begin having talks about how your kids see Satan trying to trick them and their friends using some of those same techniques.

For a fun activity to reinforce how Satan can use people to help trick them, start by reading or telling your (older) kids the story of the Witch of Endor.  (1 Samuel 28:3-25) Explain that the Bible doesn’t make it absolutely clear, but it appears this “witch” had made money tricking people into believing she had access to spirits. Often, people would use the “advice” of the spirits to make their decisions. Using spirits as a guide for making decisions is wrong, because God wants us to have Him guide us.

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8 Tips for Raising Kids Who Survive and Thrive

8 Tips for Raising Kids Who Survive and Thrive - Parenting Like Hannah

Cacti can survive and even thrive in very harsh conditions.

In Are You Accidentally Raising a Victim, I shared why you need to raise kids who don’t see themselves as victims. 10 Signs Your Child Has a Victim Mindset explained how to tell if your kids are beginning to view themselves as victims. Whether your kids already view themselves as victims or you just want to make sure they never see themselves in that light, it’s important to know how to give your kids the tools to survive and even thrive in the face of adversity.

There are a lot of things you can do to help your children become survivors instead of victims. In fact, the Bible is full of stories of people like King David who experienced a lot of really negative things.  Have your kids read how David shared his feelings about his adversities in Psalms. Then have them read the stories of how God helped David survive and even thrive in spite of the adversity in his life. If you regularly share these stories with your kids, they will begin to see the pattern of how God still works in the lives of His people.

There are other things you can do to give your kids the tools to avoid developing a victim mindset. In the case of serious trauma, your child may also need help from a mental health professional to process the event in healthy ways. For those with less traumatic negative experiences, here are a few more of my favorite tips for helping kids survive and even thrive.

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10 Signs Your Child Has a Victim Mindset

10 Signs Your Child Has a Victim Mindset - Parenting Like Hannah

My New Favorite Warning Sign!

 

In Are You Accidentally Raising a Victim, I shared the negative effects a victim mindset can have on your children and the best way to stop it from developing. Unfortunately, your kids may have already started developing a victim mindset – even if they have never experienced a particularly traumatic event. Our society loves convincing all of us we are victims. It’s a great way for others to gain power and money, by promising to “fix” our victim status.

So what are the signs your kids may already think of themselves as victims? Here are some of the most obvious ones.

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Are You Accidentally Raising a Victim?

Are You Accidentally Raising Victims? _ Parenting Like Hannah

The society who built these were forced to flee and never returned.

Want to be inspired? Walk the 3-Day Breast Cancer Walk. As I walked 60 miles over three days, I met women who had every right to think of themselves as victims. They had survived a horrible disease that had ravaged their bodies. Yet, these were some of the most energized, positive people I had ever met. They refused to think of themselves as victims.

No matter what may happen to your children, the best gift you can give them is to teach them how to avoid thinking of themselves as victims. Victims get stuck. They don’t move forward. They don’t accomplish anything, because they are fixated on their pain. They surely, can’t reach their godly potential or accomplish the plans God has for their lives. They can’t continue to mature spiritually, because growth requires looking forward.  Victims are stuck in the past when the hurt occurred.

In our society, people gain power and riches when they convince others they are victims. Then they can swoop in and “save the day” – often by actually victimizing the very people they are claiming to help. It used to be tough to convince people they were victims. Now we have a society full of them.

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Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. (Deuteronomy 11:18-19 NIV)