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What To Do When a Child Has Doubts About God's Existence


Did you know that 13% of Gen Z kids are atheists? The percentage of Gen Z kids who identify as atheists is almost double the percentage of adults (6%) who claim to be atheist.

Most of the 13% are Gen Z teens and young adults. But you will occasionally also meet younger children who say they are atheists. I have had several kids that claimed to be atheists when I asked them about their salvation.

The vast majority of the time, kids are very open and receptive to the Gospel. But occasionally, you will meet a child who claims they don't believe in God.

What should you do if you meet a child who doubts the existence of God? Let's look at some steps you can take.

1. Stay calm. Losing your composure will likely do little good. Getting angry and "preaching" to the child may deepen his or her opposition to believe in God.

"If your child has rejected the faith,

do not reject your child."

2. Listen. Listen to the child. Let them speak. Allow them to tell you how they arrived at their atheistic conclusions. Don’t yet offer comment or criticism. Just listen. Find out what brought the child to this point. Was it something they were taught at school? Was it something a friend explained to them? Was it an injustice that sent him or her spiraling spiritually? The child has a story. Invite them to dialogue and ask them to share their story with you.

3. The dialogue cannot turn into an argument. That will only push them farther away. Treat the child with respect, patience, love and kindness. Let them talk and ask them questions.

Ask questions like...

What contributed to their disbelief?

Were there specific things they read or heard that caused them to no longer believe in God?

How do they feel now that they claim to be an atheists? Has it caused any changes in their life?

4. Don't argue with him/her. Arguing will only produce more arguing. Instead, let them know you care about them as does God.

5. Show them by your beliefs and actions that you believe in Jesus and model the change He has made in your life. Simply put...be a living example of what it means to follow Jesus. The child can argue with the facts, but they can't argue with the change God has brought about in your life.

6. Pray. Only God can change a young person's heart. Ask the Holy Spirit to bring conviction and draw the child to Jesus. Our job is not to push a child into making a decision nor is it our job to hold them back as they explore and get the right answers to their questions. Our role is to simply walk beside them, have the conversations and ask God to draw them to salvation.

We have a great curriculum that teaches kids what it means to follow Jesus. It's called Starting Point and you can access it at this link.

7. Teach kids apologetics. Is it to early to teach kids apologetics? Absolutely not. Many kids want to see proof that God exists, that salvation can really happen and that Jesus was the Son of God. You can get this 4-week teaching series that helps kids see that the Bible is the Word of God. It covers key questions like, "Why does God allow pain and death? How do we know the Bible is the Word of God.

It is critical that we start teaching kids these things now when they are young. Remember what George Barna said?

"In the race to a child's heart the first one there wins."

We must get there first if we are going to reach today's kids.

8. Remember that everyone has a free will. God does not force us to accept His love and forgiveness. If we had no choice we would be mindless robots. Rather, He gives us the choice to love Him or not. There is no true freedom without the option to love or not.

9. Don't give up. Know that God is at work. He loves children more than you and I do and He wants them to come to Him. In my own personal ministry, I have seen several atheists come to faith in Christ and it changed their life completely.

What a great privilege we have to partner with God in the redemption of children. Remember the old song...

"Jesus loves the little children. All the children

of the world. Red and yellow, black and white,

they are precious in His sight. Jesus loves the

children of the world."

He even loves those who won't personally acknowledge Him. And He is sending you to share His love with children...even those who say they are an atheist.

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