Lead by Example – Teaching children to live by Giving
Teaching children in your children’s ministry to live by giving is fundamental to teaching them Godly principles, but it all starts by being thankful to the ONE who gives it to you in the first place.
It is very important to teach children to give each week to God, and to prepare their heart too.
A vast number of children’s ministries don’t feel it is important to teach children to tithe to the church when they are so young, if we lay the foundation that everything we get comes from God, and God expects us to take care of his church. God never forces anyone to give, but his word says “He loves a cheerful giver”.
Teacher toddler up to 6 years of age
Firstly between the ages of 3 – 6, they might not understand the spiritual application; however we need to teach them to give out of obedience to God.
We call it “Jesus’ Money”. One thing we need to understand is that children don’t earn money, but they obviously get their money from their parents.
Whether it is 50 cents or R50.00, it is not about the amount that counts. We ask the parent to give the child money during the week. They must go and place it under their clothes in their cupboard and look at it each day, re-enforcing that its “Jesus’ money”.
Parents are to remind their child every day to take the money on Sunday to church. This helps the child to learn to take responsibility for the money they are bringing to Jesus. The word says for us to prepare our hearts to give, don’t just reach into your pocket and see what’s left over for God. We must make a conscious decision as to the amount we want to give. Obviously the toddler/ pre-schooler will not totally understand this, but remember preschool teachers. You are laying the foundation, sometimes we give out of obedience, but then there comes a time that we sow because of our love for God. When they are at the age of understanding 6 – 13, and we start to teach them about the 10% tithe, they will already have the principle formed as their foundation.
It is different for older children
For the older child – (between the ages of 7 – 13 years) you can now start to teach them about the 10% tithe.
Children from these ages, get tuck shop money for school lunches, get pocket-money, money for birthdays, money from granny and grandpa, and some even do chores to earn extra money. So they do earn their own money.
We teach the children that if they bring money from mom, then mom will be blessed. It is her seed.
Children must bring their own money (seed) to sow.
God does not need our Money, but why are so many churches stricken with no finances, because a small percentage of Christian give to the church. So much more can be said about people arguing about the rich pastors that steal your money. God does not sleep, God knows exactly the intentions of our hearts. If there are pastors that are misusing funds of the church. The day of judgement is coming and we all will have to account to God for what God has entrusted us with.
However we got to understand that while God does not need our money, we open a door for God to take care of us,
God Almighty has put into effect that the seeds we sow, is what we can expect to receive. Every seed produces after its own kind, so if you sow money you can expect for God to take care of you in that area. If you sow love you can expect the same….. on the other hand if you sow discord, the wheels always turn and that is what we can expect to receive back.
The word of God talks a lot about sowing seeds. We must teach the children to consider what seeds they are sowing.
So many kids complain that they don’t have friends, but are they sowing friendship?
If you plant an apple seed, you will not get an orange or paw-paw. In the same way, the word tells us whatever a man sows, that is what he will reap.
If children do not bring money to church, they can blow a kiss into their hand and sow love to God and put it into the offering basket, however we as teachers need to teach them to have a heart to give finances because it is a command of God to take care of his church (Malachi 3) and other people’s needs.
If we have hearts that easily give, it opens up God’s heart and hand toward us to give back into our own lives.
If we train our children up now to have a heart to share and give, when they become teenagers, they will not find it hard to give to God and to people in need.
The ground is fertile. Take the opportunity now, and sow seeds into the lives of the kids you teach.