Perseverance is a key character trait Christians need. In fact, Romans 5:3-4 tells us, “Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.” (NIV) It sounds like for your kids to really live out godly character traits in their lives, they need to have first developed perseverance.
It makes sense. It’s hard enough to be honest, for example, consistently. It really takes a lot of perseverance to stay honest when you feel like you are swimming upstream because everyone is mocking you for your honesty. So what can you do to help your kids develop perseverance?
Well, the normal go-to activities for teaching perseverance are chores and extracurricular activities. Those are good for long term development, but what if you just want to have a family devotional on the topic with a fun activity underscoring how important perseverance is in mastering something – like godly character traits?
There is a fun toy you can find on Amazon or at local craft or toy stores. It’s called a kendama. It looks simple, but actually requires a lot of practice to master even the simplest of tricks. Once you have your kendama, gather your kids and tell them the story of King David or Noah or Abraham or Nehemiah. Really, there are quite a few people in the Bible who had to have a lot of perseverance to continue obeying God and having the faith that God would keep His promises to them.
Then pull out your kendama. Show your kids a video demonstrating how to do a simple trick. Let them try the trick. If you have the time, practice before the family devotional and show them the trick. Tell them how long you had to practice, before you could do it consistently. Explain that the kendama is just a fun toy they can use to entertain people or even to get the attention of younger kids they are working with on the mission field. To be able to use that skill for God though, they will need to practice and practice and practice.
Talk about other things God wants us to do. Or ways He wants us to behave. How many of those take practice to do well? How many of those things are things that the world will try to convince us we are wasting our time trying to do anyway? Explain perseverance means you keep trying to do what God wants you to do – even when it gets hard.
So, pull out those Bibles and a kendama and have some fun teaching your kids how to have perseverance!
An affiliate link is included for your convenience. I have found less expensive kendamas on sale at Michaels stores.