You believe in a God who has good answers to the biggest questions and objections the people around you can and will pose. Therefore, in light of the great commission and the sovereignty of God in salvation we shouldn’t be afraid to give freedom to neighbors, even children, to think about and work through the truth of Scripture and how it applies to reality.
Be interested in people even when you can’t change them. The sovereignty of God in salvation should make us more friendly and interested people. Sometimes we arrogantly enter into relationships and more often only conversations to convince people they are wrong and we are right, in that order. Our goal is often not to win the person but the argument, often losing both.
As we should be interested in our neighbors we should be interested in our kids and learn about how they think and why they think how they think. If we’re going to win them to Christ they must be more than an argument and more than a project. We don’t think of them this way when they’re infants we shouldn’t begin to think of them this way when they develop the skill of thinking. Like we help them walk, talk, ride their bike, etc… we need to help them think and then give them the freedom to exercise their skill.
When we believe in the sovereignty of God it frees us to befriend people who believe differently than we do. It allows for conversation about world views without the competition of winning an argument but learning about a friend. This doesn’t exclude persuasion but paves the way for deepening and strengthening relationships beyond the argument. Winning the person is most important, the argument is secondary. We often forget the power is in the word. The gospel has power in itself. We often remove the power of the gospel by neglecting to enter relationships if we don’t win the initial argument.
The same application can be made in our homes. When I say “ram your religion down their throat” I mean failing to leave room for kids to think and process the truth. We tend to be intimidated by questions but we need to see the difference between questions and doubt. Questions break the dam allowing the flow of thought leading to knowledge and growth. Doubt is the dam which acts as a block to thinking, growing, and knowledge of the truth. Encourage questions even when you don’t have the answers. It will be ok when our kids realize we don’t have all the answers. Win your child to Christ through relational conversation about the truth of the gospel and Scripture. Don’t be afraid of questions, our God has the answers even when we don’t.