Sunday, January 24, 2010

Teaching Missions

We’ve all been riveted in horror to the images of Haiti streaming into our living rooms since last week. This is a good time to discuss and model the response to need and crisis that want our children to display in their lives.

Here are some ideas I used to encourage compassion and mission-mindedness in my kids.
• Study the lives of great Christian missionaries. Their lives are a blueprint and inspiration for self-sacrifice and godly focus.
• Learn about different cultures. This is a perfect addition to a geography curriculum. Introduce the children to the food, music, dress, customs, games, living conditions of the people groups you are studying.
• Devote a portion of the family budget to missions giving or devise a way for you to raise funds for this purpose. Adopt a missionary, give to a specific child, the options are many and varied. Make sure the children are involved in the decisions and the giving.
• Get involved with a local effort. Visit a nursing home, help out a children’s home, volunteer at the food bank, anything that will develop a habit of reaching out to meet the needs of others.
• Discuss disasters that happen around the world. Young children, of course, should be shielded from gruesome details, but knowing that people are suffering in some way, and that we as the people of God can help is a first step.
• Study Scripture that refers to our responsibility to care for others.
• Let them see mom and dad reaching out, working with people different from themselves, sacrificing their own needs for the needs of others. This one is the kicker. I’m not sure I ever covered this one, but I offer it as a challenge to all of you!


  1. Three great resources: "The Mission-Minded Child" and "The Mission-Minded Family" both by Ann Dunagan and Window on the World by Daphne Sparaggett with Jill Johnstone.

  2. Thanks Kristi. I almost called and asked you if you knew of any good resources. So glad you added these!