Part of teaching kids to have a heart for the world means teaching them about giving.
Real, practical ways to give to world missions and missionaries working in far away places.
Today’s post is from my amazing friend Christina. She hopped over today to share with us some practical ways to help our missionaries around the world!
Helping Our Missionaries
God has not called many of us to literally go fly across the ocean to a tribe in Africa, to a lost people group in India, or to children in Latin America. Most of us will never move to another country. In fact, many of us will remain in our hometowns. But our hearts should be big enough for the lost in our cities and for the lost around the world. He has called all to “Go into all the world preaching the Gospel!” So how do we accomplish that right where we are? And how to we teach our children to have a heart for missions and our missionaries.
My family is focusing on having a bigger world view. There are two things that can position our loved ones in being a part of the Great Commission and have beautiful hearts for missions!
God has called amazing people to go to foreign soil. Friends that requires money. There is nothing I personally enjoy more than financially helping them get there. I have found that when I am giving with my finances (even though it is hard sometimes) there is great joy. We want our kids to experience the joy of giving as well. We are the example. If we want our kids to have giving hearts…we better be giving ourselves.
Here are some practical tips for teaching kids to have a giving heart….
- Let them hear stories about missionaries and the great miracles that are happening around the world because of people giving.
- Give them allowance so they can tithe and give what they would like to missions.
- If you church has a specific project the kids give to on a regular basis then encourage your child to participate.
- Adopt a child to sponsor as a family.
- Pick up a missionary family to sponsor as a family…Hint I know a good one “The Goodwin’s”.
- Do small projects as a family to raise money for missions: turn in pop cans, make baked goods and sell them at work, give up coffee or pop for a month, do some odd jobs to collect some extra cash, collect change in a jar for missions….it really does add up fast! Operation Christmas Child is another GREAT options. Check out this post from Mary at Homegrown Learners for more Operation Christmas Child info!
- See what your home church is doing for missions. If they have projects or fundraisers sign up your whole family to help out. If your church isn’t doing anything…be a part of changing that!!!
I love seeing the results of teaching my children to be giving. A few months ago, my 10 year old daughter gave up pop for a month to raise money that would help children hear about Jesus around the world. I asked her if it was too hard and she said, “Mom, it is just pop….It is not hard at all and it helps others hear about Jesus!” Do you know how much this mommy heart loved hearing that?!!! My daughter raised $900 dollars all on her own for missions last year and she is excited to do it again this year! We are teaching our children to be lifetime givers…not lifetime greedy adults!
Our missionaries need our prayers. There are countless stories of people praying at the exact time missionaries were in desperate need. Missionary work is not a vacation. It is hard work. It requires them to give more of their fair share of time, resources, energy, health, spirit, and love. It is a 24/7 job that never ends. If we can lift them up in prayer and help them… then that is the least we can do. Our prayers are effective and can do more than we could ever imagine. Let’s teach our families to be families that pray. When we pray not just for ourselves but for our missionaries, then our prayers can touch the world. It is really about lost souls finding Jesus Christ as their Savior. How cool is that!!!
Here are some tips to get your family praying…
- Here is a great book on how to pray for the nations. Operation World: The definitive prayer guide to every nation.
- Crystal from Serving Joyfully has a wonderful review about a family devotional that shares about God’s Love for people around the world.
- Target sells this really cool shower curtain “World Map”. We use it on the inside of our shower and pray for our missionaries while we get ready for the day. Or you can hang up a map or put out a globe and mark where missionaries are so they can pray daily for them.
- Let your kids pray out loud for missionaries. Let them hear you pray for missionaries. Tell them what they can specifically pray; for example when we pray for the Goodwin’s we tell them they need to have their home rented, they need to raise some more money, and that God would get them ready for this big move to Africa. It is so awesome to hear my 13 year old begin to pray for those needs.
- If a missionary comes to your church take one of their prayers cards to take home.
- Have a prayer jar or board near where you have your family devotions. We pick out a missionary to pray for each night. (Use the prayer cards you have collected)
- Email or follow blogs of missionaries you support. Find out what their specific needs are and pray for them. Find out if they have any praise reports…your kids will love hearing answers to prayers.
- If your church has a missions prayer meeting….GO or start one!
It has been so cool praying for our missionaries. We have prayed for things as a family and then we have seen answers to our prayers….like missionaries raising their needed funds, homes being rented, missionaries healed, and I am sure the list will go on and on. I love it when my kids pick a family to pray for and they pray for their kids, finances, health, and for God to be with them. Not only do we teach them to have a heart for missions when they pray…but we also teach them to establish their relationship with Christ our provider. Wow…that just gets me so excited!!!
Giving and prayer are two great ways to help our missionaries.
When we help them then we can reach our world for Jesus Christ. We can easily get our kids involved and take ownership of being a part of something so much bigger than ourselves…the Good News of Jesus! Let’s inspire our children to be world changers…it starts at home!
Christina is a licensed minister with the Assemblies of God. Christina and her husband, John, have been in full time ministry for 20 years. She is a busy mom of three beautiful children. Christina is passionate about helping children grow in their relationship with Christ and to realize all that God has planned for them. Visit Christina at Get Joy!
More from this series? Check out the other days!
Heart for the World Day 1 – Reading Resources
Heart for the World Day 2 – Missions Around the World and in your own home
Heart for the World Day 3 – 6 Lazy Mom Tips to Teach Your Kids About Missions
Heart for the World Day 4 – From the Missionary Family’s Point of View