A few years ago, my family experienced a miracle surrounding the pregnancy of my second child. I have shared about our “Christmas Miracle” before online, but I’ve also shared it multiple times with just about anybody who will listen. We love sharing the story of God stepping into our lives and we celebrate it annually, much like the Jewish people celebrate the Passover as a memory of what God had done.
As we share our stories, though, it is important that we do so appropriately. This is especially true with children. In church culture, I’ve witnessed everything from the extreme (sterilizing the supernatural to the point that it is more natural than super) to the opposite (teachings on the supernatural that looked more like pagan mysticism than a Scripture-based understanding of the heavens). Since children are so heavily impressionable, it’s important that they learn healthy teachings, as what they learn now often shapes their theology for life.
Teach Them to Desire Him
Our end result in sharing supernatural things with kids shouldn’t be for them to seek supernatural things. We should teach them to seek the Holy Spirit. As the day of Pentecost clearly shows, when we pursue God, we naturally step into the supernatural. But just because something is supernatural does not make it of God. This is an important distinction that kids need to understand.
Monitor and Correct
As with any source of power, movements of the Holy Spirit have been abused in the past. As church leadership, we have a responsibility to help form healthy theology. While moves of the Holy Spirit can vary, and I am always slow to judge one’s experiences, it is sometimes very apparent that what is happening is happening in the flesh. Those times, it is appropriate to step in. Additionally, it’s okay to softly correct a child’s theology about supernatural things. For example, if a child talks about a family member becoming an angel, it is perfectly okay to explain to them that their family member is not an angel, but is a Spirit in God’s kingdom.
Celebrate Miracles of All Sizes
We have a tendency to focus so much on the huge, raising-people-from-the-dead moments that we ignore the miracles that happen around us every single day. When we do that, we do a great disservice to the kids we are teaching. In doing so, we force them to believe that God is in the earthquake or fire, when He’s really speaking from the still, small voice. We need to celebrate the healed knees and the upset stomachs. God is at work in all things.
Live in the Supernatural
All teaching about the supernatural should be grounded in Scripture, but that Scripture should come out in the way we live our lives. We should be experiencing and realizing those miracles in our world. We should perceive the war at play between the angelic and demonic forces. We should live lives through the Holy Spirit and by His power. It’s been said that more is caught than taught. This is ever true in this area. Kids learn more from us by how we live than by what we teach them.