20-30-40 years from now, who will be sending out missionaries, building churches, adopting orphans, and translating the Bible into new languages?
...those cute toddlers crawling in your church's nursery on Sunday.
...the hungry kindergartners asking for another helping of Goldfish crackers.
... and let's not forget the sweet 1st graders asking you to pray for their sick hamster or their older sibling (who's not nice).
They will be the ones expanding God's Kingdom and passing the faith of our fathers to the next generation.
But the real question is –
Will they have the tools, resources, and skills to make a profound difference for the Kingdom of God when they grow up?
Hmm... This is where it gets tricky.
Because one of the tools they will need to have is... money, and it turns out – we're not doing a very good job teaching them about this powerful tool that "makes the world go round" (or spin out of control.)
According to a recent T. Rowe Price survey, most parents would rather talk to their kids about smoking, drugs, bullying, or even the birds and the bees than bring up the subject of money.
It doesn't seem that the church is doing any better in this area. After I reviewed the scope and sequence of over 50 children's ministry curriculums, it became clear to me that as a church, we are silent when it comes to the subject of money.
And when we do talk about money, we tend to teach our children one or two things. Either: Money is bad. Watch out for greed. Don't give your heart to money. Or: The material world is unimportant. Don't get attached to it. Give as much of your money away as you can.
I think it's tragic. Whether they like it or not, our children will have a life-long relationship with money. If we don't train them to love God, to work hard, to make money, to master money, and to use money for the glory of God and the good of people, we'll have a generation of Christians drowning in debt and consumerism, unable to make any profound difference in their world.
As a Christian culture, we've done a fairly good job of teaching children about the "dark" side of money. We have sent them a consistent "stay away" or "give away" message regarding money.
It's time that we give them the full story –
Money is a tool. Placed in the hands of a person submitted to God, this tool can accomplish a lot of amazing things.
Money is not a disease to be avoided. It's a resource to be generated, and used to display God's goodness.
In case you think it's just some lofty theory, here's a video of the children from my church and my town who are using their talents to make money so they can have a chance to contribute to the projects and causes they're passionate about.
If you would like to introduce the children in your church to a new way of thinking about money, business and their unique part in God's greater story, check out "The Great Money Adventure"!
It's a family-centered, Bible-based, experience-driven training that takes children on the exciting adventure of coming up with their own ideas, and then turning it into a profitable business.
During this course children learn crucial life skills, such as out-of-the-box thinking, decision-making, risk-taking, opportunity-spotting, compassion, courage, planning, communication, marketing and many more.
There are two easy ways to start with "The Great Money Adventure," and watch children start their own businesses this summer.
Click below for more information on each of these options.
It's time we break the silence.
It's time we get over our own discomfort when it comes to the topic of money.
It's time we start expecting great things from little people.
Let's not hold them back.
Instead, let's give them knowledge, tools, and a chance.
You'll be surprised what God can do through children who have found their place in God's greater story.