Remembering the Children

Dr. Erica Komisar – a family therapist once penned an article for the Wall Street Journal [2019] noting the positive effects religious belief and practice play in the lives of children.

She writes, “A 2018 study in the American Journal of Epidemiology examined how being raised in a family with religious or spiritual beliefs affects mental health. Harvard Researchers examined the religious involvement of approximately 5,000 people.”

“The result? Children or teens who reported attending a religious service at least once per week scored higher on psychological well-being measurements and had lower risks of mental illness. Weekly attendance was associated with higher rates of volunteering, a sense of mission, forgiveness, and lower probabilities of drug use and early sexual initiation. Pity then that the U.S. has seen a 20% decrease in attendance at formal religious services in the past 20 years, according to a Gallup report earlier this year.”

Researchers found there is a striking correlation between religious practice and children having healthier life skills and abilities to handle the unique challenges of adolescence. Parents ought not underestimate the value of things like Sunday School attendance or a Summer Bible camp experience. Children that memorize verses of the Bible at a young age often find those verses to be available for recall their entire lives. Learning the lesson of David and Goliath or Daniel in the lion’s den can bear fruit in many different contexts.

In 2009 – University of Florida football quarterback Tim Tebow had written John 3:16 into his eye black while playing in the college championship football game in 2009. That led to John 3:16 becoming the top google search that day as some 94 million people looked up John 3:16 on the internet to see what it says. That is a tremendous testimony to Tebow using his platform to exalt Christ. However, one could just as easily wonder why there are 94 million people out there who do not know what John 3:16 says. Somebody never took them to church, I guess.

When we consider the challenges of the 21st century and ponder what the world will be like for our children who are now just beginning their life journey, we can see how important a knowledge of biblical truth will be for them. Let’s remember the kids. Give them a moral foundation. Help them to see their lives have value and purpose. Let them hear of God’s love and forgiveness once displayed on a hill called Calvary.

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