Theo in worship

Leading Kids into Presence of God

May 23, 2011, 0 Comments

I love worship sessions and the tangible presence of God felt so strongly during those sessions. The easiest way to bring young children into the presence of God, is also during worship.

Right from the time when my boys are still in my womb, I like to expose my children to sounds of worship. As babies, I would take them with us whenever we worship, whether it be us worshipping at home, or participating in congregational worship. Our heavenly Father longs to commune with the kids, he longs to speak with them no matter how young they are or how young they themselves think they are. My older tot loves to watch how musicians prepare themselves and he also love various instruments, just the way it looked and sounded intrigued him. My younger tot generally likes dancing and moving to the beat of the music. Every child love music, they just respond to it differently. But Praise & Worship is more than just music.

I attended iSow (international school of worship) workshop in Singapore some months back and like to share some notes which can help us as a parent-teachers or as a sunday school teachers help our kids enter the presence of God. Lord forbid we enter a worship session that looks like mere singing session but powerful worship that gives victory. :) Won’t we all like that?

I have heard this emphasis more than once. We are created spirit, soul & flesh. Matt 22: 37 ‘Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’

1) Hence we teach children to wake their flesh (bodies) up by jumping and in action even though the spirit is ‘asleep’. Physical actions causes a heart connection.
How many times we have found ourselves in a place where our hearts are willing, but our flesh is weak. Shake up the flesh and make it obedient to the Holy spirit.

2) Teach children how to hear from the holy spirit and praise God.

- I do this at home by letting both my boys lie down on the floor and getting them to close their eyes. Then I encourage them to hear from God. I often uses worship songs so that it soothes the spirit and helps them keep their focus on God. I would play the keyboard and sometimes sing or let the holy spirit guide me, sometimes I don’t sing, I let the music minister. My older tot would tell me often what God says to him. (Practise makes perfect, getting it ‘wrong’ is just another step forward. keep encouraging them to listen.) As a new mother 4 years ago, I had to ‘learn’ to listen to the cries of my baby to distinguish the difference. At first, I made mistakes, I made wrong assumptions, but over time as I keep ‘tuning in’ and keep learning to hear, it didn’t take long before I understand what each cry represents!

- We could play a song (on an instrument or on CD) and let the children express themselves through drawings. Young children expresses themselves in different ways, through drawing, through dancing & movements, through words etc. Find out what your child is comfortable doing and nurture them. Remember to look at the expressions and talk through it. It could be that the expressions reflects what they think of/feel or what they think God is speaking to them about. Keep practising!

3) Praise don’t always have to be fast! it is intense, focus, victorious. Often loud, its is powerful, strong, exhuberant, full of victory! The song talks about who God is, and what he has done. it is a proclamation.
If you are a worshipper (And it really helps! If not, practise being one, we could ask God for a new song, or keep worshipping, a song will come to us , old or new, don’t worry about it. The key is to be able to usher your child into the presence of God. As we practise, we enter his presence quicker and easier. Use an instrument or CD, or pray over scriptures)

4) Presence of God instills security, faith, hope, love.
Some children come into sunday school classes or starts the day with anxiety, insecurity, or hunger! Sunday School may start so early some don’t have time for breakfast. If you are ministering in a different culture, or different groups of children, learn to discern and minister through praise & worship accordingly.

5) Miracles happens – Where the presence of God is, healing comes. Kids needs healing too. God longs to heal, not just the physical ailments, but he removes burdens and restore confidence. Fears are common to children, because of the lack of experience, knowledge and understanding, very young children are also developmentally unable to verbalise it. Be sensitive to the move of Holy Spirit. Our role is to get the children to recieve the love of God.

What we do at home – and you can too!

*Incorporate worship in our home daily! Let our homes be a fragrant offering unto the Lord. Well, I used to just do a session of worship at a stipulated time, slotted right into our schedule before lunch. After seeing how our senior pastor followed the Holy Spirit to totally turn the schedule of our service around, I went … wow… that is the way! How many times have we said we would let the Holy Spirit take the lead, yet be so dogmatic in our schedule! So convicted in my spirit that I made a radical change to do it HIS way in my home.

We now worship anytime. When I discern the hearts of my boys and especially when there is a need, I like to take my family to battle in dynamic (Dunamis) prayer and praise usually at my keyboard. I was also especially touched by the way the church incorporates Family worship (that’s babies and all the kiddos!) into the main congregation every 1st week of the month. It speaks of the importance of Family worship in which we could model at home.

* Look for materials that not only teaches about God, but also about his power. We cover all genres. Hymns, contemporary songs, Jewish songs. We also use ARISE materials from iSOW. I particularly like this song “If I can believe it, I can recieve it”. I use this song to prepare my 4 yr-old’s heart to hide God’s word.

* Get involved! I try to ask about all the songs that my children learns/sings every Sunday, then I look up the score and play it on my keyboard during our worship sessions at home. They are very motivated to sing the songs that they learn in sunday school, specially when we, parents take an interest in them! That’s something we could have fun doing besides sitting besides them coaching their homework every night, which is, sometimes not that much fun for bigger kids. Worship can be a family activity!

*Proclamation of faith!
I learnt that praise should be dynamic. It should be victorious. We love shouting battle claims, such as “I love Jesus!” I have both my tots (aged two and four) do that with me. We could proclaim scriptures, proclaim healing and proclaim restoration. If we do our worship at night, Daddy is able to join in.

May your family be victorious worshippers!

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