Have you ever watched toddlers with a shape sorter? At first they try to force the square peg into the round hole. Then they strain to jam the round peg into the square opening or the triangle into the square. In time, however, they learn that the shapes cannot be forced.
Shape sorters can teach us something about sharing the gospel, especially with children. We can pray and share, but we can’t force a response. The decision to trust Jesus as Savior and Lord is ultimately between the individual (regardless of age) and the Holy Spirit.
Some of us—with good intentions—have tried to force children to repeat words because we think they should. To please the adults in their world, they may repeat a prayer they don’t understand or are not ready to say.
The result is often a spiritual struggle as they get older. Sadly, many of these children grow up with either doubts about their salvation or a false sense of security because they repeated the words to a “magic” prayer.
Of course, we want to share the gospel with the next generation. We want them to know Christ at an early age. But it’s critical to trust the Holy Spirit’s timing and preparation of hearts to respond to His call. He is the one who draws us to Him with His unfailing grace and kindness (Jeremiah 31:3).
Share the gospel…while being sensitive to the Holy Spirit’s leading as you share!