- know why they believe what they believe?
- know how to say what they believe?
- know how to teach others or share with others what they believe?
- know how to defend what they believe?
You may answer 'yes' and those may be the end goals of what you have in mind for your child. I know I sure want that for my trio.
I believe you can't get to the 'know how to defend what they believe' part unless you have the 'know what they believe' part.
So that's sounds easy enough, right? Just teach my kids what they believe. Well, when you have children it doesn't always come natural to us Parents the exact way of going about it.
****Deuteronomy 6:7New King James Version (NKJV)7 You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.*****
One way to teach them diligently to your children is through a catechism. Yup, I said it...a catechism. Intoxicated on life blog summarizes a catechism as:
"Catechism is a tool for teaching important information using a question and answer format. That’s pretty much it. There are some secular uses of catechism, but most are for religious purposes. In fact, many parents catechize informally all the time and don’t realize it."
I encourage you to read the entire blog post about catechisms: http://www.intoxicatedonlife.com/2014/01/19/teaching-catechism/
So if a catechism helps children to learn information about what they believe and why---then, how can I do this in my family?
If you are a part of my home church, there is already a 'catechism' program, activity in place known as JBQ (Junior Bible Quiz). Yes, we participate in it and this post is all about sharing how JBQ can help a family in teaching a child to 'know what they believe'.
In all honesty, my daughter did not buzz in at an official meet once last year. But, that doesn't mean that she didn't learn. She did learn....a lot!
While JBQ has a quiz aspect and a commitment to boot, I believe the benefits far outweigh the time you and your family spend in learning the questions and answers.
I assert that in order to truly have a fun time 'quizzing' one must first know the content (q & a's).
Last year, I took a sideline Parent approach. I was too busy or that's what I told myself. After seeing how my children were truly 'hiding God's Word in their heart' AND learning key information about our beliefs, I decided that this year I would make it a point to invest time with my children in learning the JBQ 10 and 20 point questions.
The main time commitments include:
- JBQ practice on Sunday mornings at 9:00am (45 minutes) from about September-February. (about 20 practices in total)
- One JBQ meet a month on Saturdays (Oct, Nov, Jan, Feb) from about 9am - noon.
- *Your time in learning and reading the questions and answers. This can be achieved by simply reading them to your child, asking them questions, listening to the JBQ CD, reading the Bible stories that pertain to the questions.
Here are some videos from my kids that will show the kinds of questions that are asked.: (The volume is horribly low so I wrote the Q&A's.)
Middle Sis: Question- What is the Bible? The Bible is the inspired Word of God and His revelation to all people of himself and his plan of salvation. (to the tune of Yankee Doodle)
Little Bro: Who was the first man and first woman? Adam and Eve; How many books are in the Bible? 66, What are the two divisions of the Bible? The New Testament and the Old Testament.
Big Bro: What do we mean when we say the Bible is our authoritative rule of faith and conduct? The Bible has the right to command us in what we believe and what we do.
My kids represent all types of 'learners' and levels. Our youngest will be in the Pee Wee league and will only learn 10 point questions. Our daughter will be in the Beginners and learn 10 points and a few 20 points. Our oldest will learn all 10 points and 20 points. They also respond to the actual competition part in different ways, too--from competitive to shy 'non buzzer'. ;)
This was taken today just hanging out eating ice cream and during the JBQ season break. Meaning we have not actively been learning or reviewing the JBQ material during the Summer. But, it is indicative to what they have remembered already. (Our youngest learned from hearing his siblings and being 'taught' by his siblings and Mama.)
So this year, I ask that you pray and talk to your Spouse about whether or not to be a part of JBQ this season. It may or not be the time. But, if it is.....I say go for it. Your kids will learn and I guarantee you will too. (Questions?? Message me or Lisa G. by email or facebook or text or grab me in the hall at Church)
JBQ video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y7bHpkPkKLA