Helping Children Through Challenging times (Parenting Resources)
by Rebecca | June 3, 2020Dear Families,
As we continue these difficult times, as parents you may feel overwhelmed in navigating all the challenges that lay before you. It seems like such a scary time to be raising children in such a fallen world. But you are not alone. You have been given one of the greatest tools, God’s word the Holy Scriptures. As believers we also have the gift of the Holy Spirit to help guide and teach us. And God also designed the church, the body of believers to encourage and walk along- side one another.
As parents we are mandated to bring up children in the fear of the Lord, children who will Love God and others and make a difference in the world. We want to bring up children who will be kingdom shapers, whose influence in this world will draw others into the eternal kingdom!
Even so, we may feel great discouragement and inadequacy during these times. Some of our children are experiencing a lot of fear and insecurities as our world changes. We can either allow these challenges to pull us down or we can place our faith in God and trust him to use it for His good and glory.
These times can be an opportunity to teach our children about God’s great love for all people and his wonderful care for others and how to treat others the way He would treat them. This is also an opportunity to teach our children about the unchanging love of God for them and to help strengthen our faith in God’s care and to place our trust in Him. Here are a few parenting resources to help guide you. Please feel free to reach out to us to let us know how we can be of help to you or if you have any prayer requests.
Because God loves your kids and so do we!
Rebecca and Your Chapel Wood Kids Ministry Team
Parenting Tools and Resources to Help with Challenging Times
Helping Children work through Fear:
- Listen to your child. Talking about a specific fear may help your child learn to deal with it. Listen to what he says and how he talks about the fear.
- Recognize your child’s fear without passing judgement by laughing or saying unkind words.
- Answer your child’s questions honestly. Clear up any misconceptions your child may have in relation to the fear. Keep your answers simple and age appropriate.
- Model a calm attitude for your child to follow. If you respond to a situation in fear or panic, your child will pick up emotional cues from you.
- Prepare your child when you know he will face a fearful situation. For example, if your child is fearful of people wearing masks, show him the mask he will wear. Explain simply that people are wearing masks to keep germs from spreading. Let him see you put on a mask, and then help him put his on and practice wearing it. Let him look in a mirror while wearing his mask.
- Offer ways for your child to calm himself through reading, listening to music, or playing a board game.
- Provide ways for your child to express his feelings through drawing, pounding play dough, or making a paper bag puppet.
- Provide reassurance to your child. Spend extra time with your child. Remind him that God cares for him.
- Read books together. Some books can help children deal with their feelings. Use Sometimes I Am Afraid to read about fears and give reassurance through the Bible thoughts used in the book.
- Give your child opportunities to do something to help others. Your family could make cards for grocery store clerks or your postal carrier. Let your child draw pictures or make a homemade book to give an elderly neighbor. Doing things for others helps a child to see beyond his own needs, and also gives more of a feeling of control to the child.
- Remind your child that God is always with him. Think of Bible verses that give you comfort and say these with your child.
- With preschoolers, use the Bible thought: God is my helper. I will not be afraid (see Heb. 13:6).
- For school-age children, use a Bible verse such as: When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. Psalm 56:3.
- Pray for and with your child. Encourage your child to talk to God in prayer when he is afraid. Guide your child to know that we can go to God in prayer at any time. Pray together and ask God to give your child strength and peace.
Excerpted from Joy Smith, WMU National Preschool Consultant. You can read the full article at http://www.wmu.com/?q=article/wmu-blog-preschool-mission-friends/preschool-resource-team/children%E2%80%99s-fears
Great book to teach about God’s love for all people
ColorFull: Celebrating the Colors God Gave Us