Kids are absolutely drawn to phones. Like ducks to water. Pigs to mud. Self-isolating Aussies to Bondi Beach. They just can’t stay away. In fact I started calling our 1yr old a niffler because it’s like he can just sniff out where my phone is. He’s been a slower mover than his older brother, but man, if there’s a phone on the floor he’s faster than Barry Allen (he’s the flash for those of you playing at home). And when they get older, kids don’t just wanna hold it anymore. They want to watch your videos (again and again and again and again), listen to your music. Then they want to play your games. Then they want to download their own games (and accidentally spend $$$ on in-app purchases). Until they start asking for their own phone.
But particularly while they are young, why not use their obsession with phones for some good discipleship moments. Here are 4 you could do:
1. Talking to God
The most obvious idea is to use phone conversations as a springboard into talking about conversations with God. Just like you can’t see the person you’re talking to (thanks for nothing FaceTime!), you also can’t see God. But the cool thing about God is that he’s always listening. He will always pick up. In fact, he does’n’t even need a phone – he can hear you even when you just think a prayer. And there are never any reception issues. How epic is it that people who trust in Jesus (now that’s a sweet phrase to build into your vocabulary) know that he is always listening to them?
Questions to ask:
What is something you’d love to tell God?
What is something you’d love to ask God?
2. Calling Jesus
A fun little game you could play is hypothetical calls with Jesus. You could get your kids to pretend to call him, and think about what they might say to him. You could also get their thoughts on what he might say back. You can then help them reflect on the likelihood of him saying those things, based on what he does say in the Bible. A good opportunity for them to express themselves to him, as well as working together with you (and the Bible) to get to know him better.
3. Kind Calls
Ask your kids who might benefit from a kind phone call. Plan with your kids some kind things you could say to them, or ask them. Then call them. Afterwards tell your kids that when we are kind to others, we are becoming more like Jesus our king – who was super kind to us!! It’s also a good opportunity to pray for that person.
Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. Ephesians 4:32
4. Go Tell It On The Telephone
Similar to point 3, but this time get your kids to have a think about someone who doesn’t know Jesus. Get your kids to give them a call, because they have some great news to tell them, and they couldn’t wait any longer. Pray for that person before and after the call, and debrief the chat with your kids afterwards
I hope these 4 ideas have been helpful! See here more instalments of the 100.