Show your toddler how to pray and let him hear your prayers.

Raising Toddlers With Christian Values

by Melissa Gagnon

Some days, you might feel as though God is testing your patience while you are raising your toddler. You want to teach your toddler Christian values but wonder whether you should just focus on teaching him to listen. Toddlers are at a age when that can start learning from you about how to serve God and practice Christian values. Your toddler is like a little sponge right now and will absorb your actions and what you say. Start instilling Christian values by modeling actions and talking with your toddler about your beliefs.

1. Teach Prayer

The prayer of a toddler is precious. Teaching your toddler to pray, even if he has to repeat after you, will instill a daily habit of prayer in his Christian life. Toddlers can pray about family members, friends and whatever they are worried about. They can also thank God for good things in their life such as family, loved ones, and food and clothing.

2. Teach to Serve

Your toddler always wants to "help." Sometimes it might seem he is more of a distraction than a helper, but use his willingness to instill servanthood values in him at a young age. Being a servant means helping others. You can model this by reaching out to those in the church or neighborhood who need help. Let your toddler help serve by cooking a meal together and bringing your toddler along to deliver it. Let your toddler help clean up the nursery at church after service or help a neighbor pick weeds in the yard.

3. Teach the Importance of the Bible

Toddlers love stories, and many books for toddlers tell biblical stories. After your child gets to know and love some Bible stories, try acting it out with puppets together. Your toddler might even want to play dress-up and act like his favorite Bible character. Teach your toddler to memorize short verses from the Bible by repeating them together or singing them in the form of a song. Add finger movements or dance moves to Bible verses for your active toddler.

4. Teach Faith

"Where's God"? your toddler asks you. "Why can't I see Him"? Although those questions might take you by surprise, you have just found an opportunity to teach your child about faith: trusting in God and his teachings. Faith is an important foundation for a relationship with God and you want your toddler to understand it. Bring the discussion to a toddler's level by using terms he can understand. Comparing God to someone who loves him, such as a grandfather who lives far away, might help him visualize that even though he cannot see God, God still loves and cares for him.

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