This wonderful article was written by Joanne Beckley, aka “Granny,” who has a wealth of experience as a Bible teacher. I hope it will encourage you as much as it did me.
TEACHING CHILDREN – My story
We chose to live in a foreign country in order to spread the gospel in that part of the world. In doing so, we felt the burden of realization that we were without the support of other Christians available to help us teach our children. The significance of this weighed heavily upon us the entire 14 years our sons were with us in South Africa.
Leaning on the example of my father who filled my summers with a Bible, butcher paper spread out over the kitchen table, and an old Bible atlas, Dave and I decided that he would read the Bible with the boys every morning before breakfast (school began at 7am, so this made for early risings!) and I would provide a 30 minute Bible class situation for them every afternoon, five days a week. This required preparation every morning on my part and soon I was trying my hand at writing class material suitable not only for myself but for other mothers here in southern Africa — and eventually for mothers in the States.
I had been taught that the Bible is a history book and that God used history to teach us – so I did the same for our sons. I learned I could throw anything at them and they could learn it and memorize it. Then as they grew older and their understanding continued to develop, Dave took over. We felt it was important that our boys have his example and influence. Of course bedtimes were still full of questions and we would pull out the Bible for answers. We wasted no time.
Living without the overwhelming boredom-breaking “advantages” American parents have at their fingertips proved to be a blessing and we found joy in centering our lives around Christ. We NEEDED one another – and we knew it. But oh, how wonderful it was when a family visited us or passed through our home on the way to somewhere, and we could share our worship in song and prayer.
When our eldest son entered Florida College, he phoned us after several weeks had gone by. Tim wanted to share a sincere compliment with us. “Mom, my teachers keep asking me why I know so much Bible — and I told them!. . . . Mom, Dad, thank you.”
Today, our sons are teaching their children.
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