Milestones are designed to help you prepare for and fully engage in significant moments in your child’s life. You are your child’s most important spiritual leader! Take full advantage of these moments to help your child follow close to Jesus.
DEDICATION OF CHILDREN
THE COMMITMENT TO FOLLOW JESUS
- Asking God to forgive you of your sins.
- Believing that God’s Son, Jesus Christ, died to take the punishment for your sins.
- Confessing that you want Him to be the Lord of your life.
For the child who grows up in a Christian home, the decision to follow Christ is often reached between the ages of 7-11. This decision may also come later in life. From the time your child is an infant, it is your job as a parent to help your child come to an understanding of who they are in God’s kingdom so that, when they are ready, they can make their own profession of faith and accept Jesus as their savior.As you parent, your job is to be continually teaching your children about who Jesus is and how they can have a relationship with Him. You can help your children understand what sin is, and that we are all sinners (Romans 3:23) and that God forgives sin (1 John 1:9).This may seem like a daunting task, but you are not alone! Regularly pray for the Holy Spirit to be active in your child’s life. Kids hear things at church or at home which can prompt questions about sin, salvation, and their relationship with God. Ask the Holy Spirit to make your child ready to make a decision to accept Jesus as his or her Savior. Ask the Holy Spirit for wisdom as you guide your child to this point.
- Baptism shows we are followers of Christ. It symbolizes the salvation that you already have received (1 Peter 3:21; 28:19,20).
- Water baptism is a visual testimony of our spiritual birth. It is a pledge and promise to always live our lives for Jesus (Romans 6:4; 2 Corinthians 5:17; John 3:4-6).
- It shows that one has chosen to serve God, not self (Acts 2:38; Romans 6:3,4,11-14).
- It is a symbol that a person’s sins have been washed away (Psalm 51:7; Romans 6:3,6). Water baptism isn’t the removal of dirt from the body, but it reminds us that God has removed our sins
- Water baptism shows one is now dead to sin and alive to Christ (Romans 6:3-11).
Parents often wonder at what age a child should be baptized in water. The answer isn’t an easy one because each child is different. Many children are ready to be water baptized by seven or eight or nine years of age. When a really young child asks if he can be baptized, especially after he has seen it being done in church, we recommend that the parents talk about it and then wait for that child to ask a second time. That is typically a clue that God is dealing with his heart and that the child is recognizing his need for this step with God.
Parents, we encourage you to monitor when your child is ready to take communion. Once they have a clear understand of what it represents and why we do it, have them sit in a communion service with you to see how it is done. We encourage parents to take the lead on when their children take their first communion.