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"Daddy! Read It Again!"

Author: Tammy Fernando

Picture: Pexels

"Daddy! Read It Again!"

Books and stories are a great way of helping our children grow in faith, says Tammy Fernando.

God's Design

Our God has designed children so that they learn best while they are having fun. And it’s through the fun of hearing Godly stories that children can learn about God and learn to love Him.

Children are amazing. As I studied to become a nursery teacher, I was in absolute awe of God’s design of these little human beings. He has given children under the age of 6 years a sensitive brain that soaks up all of life’s experiences without a filter.

Whatever they experience will stay with them forever and will actually form them as people-even into adulthood. This puts a huge responsibility onto parents. 

It makes sense, then, to use these tender years to give our children positive experiences of God and to start to develop the most important relationship of their lives.

Forming Saints Who Can Fly Into Heaven

I remember as a 4 year old helping my dad in the early hours of the morning to build our coal fire. We had to make doughnuts of twisted newspaper and this took some skill.

I felt very proud that I had helped my dad-though I am not sure how good my doughnuts were! I remember my dad smiling at me. He seemed to be mildly amused by this daughter of his wanting to be a grown up with her little hands.

I think that this experience helped my self esteem and helped give me courage to try all sorts of new things throughout my life. In a similar way, when we have had a painful experience, it can make us retreat from people-that’s very sad. Thankfully Jesus heals.

As adults, we have to try our best to give children holy experiences that will enable them to become holy people. Surely that’s what God wants-saints that can fly into Heaven!

Faith

Faith in God is caught and not taught. I still sometimes find myself clutching my coat against the cold in the same way that my mum used to. I ‘caught’ this mannerism from my mum. In a similar way, by modelling our faith, we can also help our children catch it.

In fact, we can start by talking to our unborn babies about God’s wonderful love for them. A baby as young as 28 weeks has well developed hearing. The baby will, of course, hear mummy’s voice the loudest as it reverberates through her body towards his/her tiny ears.

However, babies can also pick up sounds of daddy’s voice. As a midwife, I used to be amazed at how a newborn baby would turn his/her head towards the voice of their father-they really recognised it.

Of course, this is the start and needs to be continued as a child grows and develops. So much can be done to help pass on the faith, from praying out loud for a parking space, to explaining how you experienced God’s blessing.

Storybooks

Children love storybooks and will ask their favourite stories to be read again and again. This is how they learn. They will want to listen to it because they are gaining so much from it. Imagine a storybook, then, that’s fun, fiction and  Godly-what conversations about God might be sparked off from these?

There are plenty of Catholic authors writing Godly fiction for young hearts, such as Jean Schoonover-Egolf, whose website you can explore here.  It’s worth investing in Catholic reads. One day, I hope to help build God’s Kingdom by having my own children’s storybook published.

  • You can find out more about Tammy and her stories at her Facebook page: “Tammy Fernando’s Christian Children’s Stories”.

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