Kayla Stevens is the Content Editor for Lifeway Kids Discipleship. She is a graduate of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary and William Carey University. Kayla lives in Nashville, Tennessee and has served in Kids ministry for over 10 years.
“Look, Ms. Kayla!” I often heard as little feet darted down the hallways. “I brought my Bible today!” As a KidMin leader, these were words I loved to hear each Sunday. “I am so glad,” I smiled in return, “because today we are going to open it and use it!”
As parents and ministry leaders, we long for the Word of God to be treasured and transformative in the lives and hearts of our kids. We pray for their salvation. We work to disciple not only spiritually healthy kids but healthy adults who continue to grow and make more disciples of King Jesus. Yet, where do we start in this huge task of disciple-making? I think the answer may be simpler than we sometimes imagine.
We start by opening the Bible.
According to Lifeway Research and Nothing Less, the single greatest spiritual influencer of healthy Christian adults is that they read their Bibles as children. Yet, regular Bible reading is one of the lowest spiritual activities kids are engaging in today (28-29%). If we want to engage kids and families with healthy habits of discipleship, we must begin by leading our kids to open their Bibles regularly.
That is why I am so excited about the release of a new resource to help your kids do just that. Foundations for Kids: New Testament is a one-year—260-day Bible reading plan that engages the hearts and minds of kids in God’s Word. This plan highlights 260 foundational passages of the New Testament to encourage kids to read and understand their Bibles in a way that is interactive, accessible, and fun!
Here are 4 ways this resource implements healthy spiritual habits to help kids and families on their discipleship journey.
#1- Kids open their Bibles. This resource encourages kids to regularly read the truths found in God’s Word. They reflect on how it changes their hearts to look more like Jesus. It provides daily Scripture references that are age-appropriate and accessible to both younger and older kids. Through this plan, kids develop the habit of opening their Bibles on their own and discovering more about who God is and who He created them to be.
#2- Kids interact with what they read. They learn what the Bible verses they study mean within its given context. Foundations for Kids: New Testament follows the H.E.A.R. method to help kids interact with and apply the truths of God’s Word. The acronym H.E.A.R. stands for Highlight, Explain, Apply, and Respond. Each day, kids read a New Testament passage and interact with what they read through explanations, fun activities, discussion questions, and prayer.
#3- Kids apply God’s Word to their lives. The daily devotionals found within these pages encourage kids to act on what they read and study. Kids learn to live out their faith in tangible ways. They learn how the Word of God changes them to grow in their faith, acting on the truths of God’s Word in active obedience to Him.
#4- Kids engage with the whole family. Discipleship doesn’t happen in a vacuum. Both the church and the family link together to invest in the spiritual health of kids. Robby and Kandi Gallaty get this. That is why this Bible reading plan expands beyond kids to students and adults as well. The whole family can join the discipleship journey together, walking through the same passages of scripture all year long. This resource also includes a church plan that provides ideas and opportunities for your entire church family to walk through the New Testament together.
Foundations for Kids: New Testament is a great tool for helping you to champion discipleship in your ministry to kids and families this coming year. Lead them to open their Bibles together and discover the transforming power of their Savior through His Word.