10 Things to Teach Your Children about the Holy Spirit

Updated May 10, 2019
10 Things to Teach Your Children about the Holy Spirit

A vast majority of sermons dive into who God the Father and Jesus His Son are, but what about the other member of the Trinity? Far fewer teachings address the Holy Spirit, who, according to Scripture, would come to the disciples after Jesus left the earth (Luke 24:49). Many of us adults struggle to fully understand the role the Spirit plays in our Christian walk, so our children definitely need us to help them learn who the Spirit is and how He works. 

Here are 10 important things to teach your children about the Holy Spirit:

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1. He lives inside of us.

1. He lives inside of us.

When we ask Jesus to enter our lives, we are allowing the Holy Spirit access to our hearts and souls. Therefore, we are never alone. We can be assured that if we yield our lives to Him and lay down our plans in exchange for God’s, the Spirit is faithful in guiding us toward righteousness.

Teach your children how they can call upon God’s Spirit, confident that He is faithful to answer their calls, no matter what they have done in their lives (Acts 2:21).

As in any relationship, God’s Spirit in us needs attention and engagement in order to grow. We are called into “fellowship” with His Spirit (2 Corinthians 13:14).

Soaking in God’s word, spending time in prayer, and seeking community with other believers are all necessary to nurturing and growing our relationship with the Spirit. These points of engagement are provided by God to help us hear His voice and learn to obey (Ephesians 4:30).

Help your child understand that having the Holy Spirit is part of their inheritance as His children, and that they have a very personal part to play in knowing God’s Spirit.

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2. His purpose is to comfort, encourage, and convict.

2. His purpose is to comfort, encourage, and convict.

But as for me, I am filled with power, with the Spirit of the Lord, and with justice and might, to declare to Jacob his transgression, to Israel his sin.” (Micah 3:8)

When we are in tune with the Spirit, we know we can call upon Him to reveal to us when sin is impeding our relationship with God, to encourage us when times are tough, and to comfort in times of trouble. However, most people don’t realize they have been given power through Christ to call upon the Spirit for His help at any time.

For years, I believed that once I was filled with the Spirit at the time of conversion, that was all that needed to happen. However, it is easier to be influenced by the world than by God.

We need to ask the Spirit to fill us and sustain us on a daily basis in order to keep our lives aligned with God.

God's Spirit is His provision for keeping us in relationship, walking alongside Him daily. He saves us from an achiever’s mindset that tempts us to treat the Spirit as a means to an end, rather than a person of the Trinity who loves us with the fullness of our Father’s love.

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3. With the spirit, we can endure any trial—even death.

3. With the spirit, we can endure any trial—even death.

Now Stephen, a man full of God’s grace and power, performed great wonders and signs among the people.” (Acts 6:8)

In the U.S, we don’t see a lot of Christian persecution. That doesn’t mean this won’t change in the years to come.

Stephen, a man whom the Bible says was clearly filled with the Spirit, carried out the work of Jesus. This, of course, angered onlookers who sought to stop him. But when they seized Stephen and were stoning Him, the Bible says in Acts 6:15, All who were sitting in the Sanhedrin looked intently at Stephen, and they saw that his face was like the face of an angel.”

What a testimony! Although not much is known about Stephen except for the account in Acts 6, Luke testifies that He was full of wisdom, so much so that no one could stand up against it. He performed miracles in Jesus’ name and received the Spirit when the elders laid hands on him. What mother doesn’t want their child to be known as a person full of the Spirit? We underestimate the power of the Spirit, but His power in our lives can make us do and say things we never thought possible.

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4. The Spirit speaks for us when we don’t know what to say.

4. The Spirit speaks for us when we don’t know what to say.

“Whenever you are arrested and brought to trial, do not worry beforehand about what to say. Just say whatever is given you at the time, for it is not you speaking, but the Holy Spirit.” (Mark 13:11)

Talking about Jesus to others is intimidating. Often people will reject us or brand us as fools if we talk about Him to others. But the Spirit promises that when we are in tune with Him, He will speak for us, guiding our words.

Teach children that their mouths are powerful tools to spread the gospel. After all, God Himself used words to speak life into existence. In the same way, we have the power to breathe new life into others by proclaiming the risen Christ. Although it is scary, we can take comfort in knowing the Spirit will give us what we need say, even when we can’t find the right words.

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5. We have to ask to be filled with the Spirit.

5. We have to ask to be filled with the Spirit.

“Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them.  All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.” (Acts 2:2-4)

It is easy to believe that Christ’s followers already had access to the Spirit since they had spent the last three years of their lives with Him. Yet, the Spirit was a gift given after Christ’s ascension.

Many churches, however, don’t preach that we have to ask continually to be filled with the Spirit, especially when circumstances can cause the flame of the Spirit to diminish. When we ask to be filled, our hearts are changed, and our minds are renewed. Then we can do the work Christ has for us to do.

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6. He is a gift from Jesus.

6. He is a gift from Jesus.

Peter replied, ‘Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” (Acts 2:38)

Although the gift of the Spirit is free to those who believe, it does require something of believers—a changed heart.

This verse indicates not only turning away from a sinful life, but also publicly declaring faith in Christ. The Spirit can’t dwell in people that, in one moment, claim they believe, and in another, act in a way that is contrary to the Spirit. Kids need to understand that their whole hearts have to be turned toward God (not just some of the heart) for them to receive the Spirit.

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7. He is here to guide us in the ways of the Lord.

7. He is here to guide us in the ways of the Lord.

But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things…” (John 14:26)

Jesus spent a large chunk of His time on earth meeting the needs of the community through healing and driving out demons, but He also spent time training up His disciples to carry out His work when He left earth.

Your child may participate in church activities, but that does not determine whether they have the Spirit of God living in them. Information is one thing; transformation is quite another. As a parent, the best thing you can do for your child when teaching them about the Spirit is be a living example of what the Spirit looks like in a vibrant spiritual life.

Teach them through example how to interact with the Spirit through prayer, how to listen to him in silence, and how to participate in kingdom work when the Spirit guides you.

It may not seem like much, but in this post-faith era, your example is one of the best lessons a child can learn. Kids need to see real-life examples of the Word they read each day. Teach a child how to follow Christ by putting your walk on display.

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8. The Spirit gives us power and enables us to spread the gospel to the ends of the earth.

8. The Spirit gives us power and enables us to spread the gospel to the ends of the earth.

Acts 1:8 says, But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

In this individualistic world, it is easy to deceive ourselves into thinking that church is just one aspect of life that is separate from all other areas.

But kids need to understand that they have the opportunity to receive great power from the Spirit simply by asking. When a child has experienced the Spirit in a way that transforms their lives, you won’t be able to keep them quiet—they’ll tell everyone they know from the east to the west.

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9. The Holy Spirit gives us clarity and revelation.

9. The Holy Spirit gives us clarity and revelation.

“But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.” (John 14:26)

When times are tough, it is easy to be disoriented by the devil’s schemes. During the most difficult circumstances, Satan wants to fill our minds with doubts and fears, hoping to erase all that the Lord has done in our lives. But sometimes we need a reminder of who Jesus is and what He has done in our lives.

Call upon the Holy Spirit and ask Him to give you clarity and revelation for recognizing the voice of truth. When you can’t be with your children, they can remember that the Lord is still there, waiting to guide them. They only have to ask.

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10. Through the spirit, we are adopted into the family of God.

10. Through the spirit, we are adopted into the family of God.

Romans 8:15 says, “The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, ‘Abba, Father.’” 

Through Christ’s death on the cross, we are allowed access into God’s family. He adopts us as His children. What great news!

These words are easier to know and accept for children, but what about when our kids grow into adults? It is easy to forget who our holy parent is; a parent who willingly chose to call us His own.

Teach your kids that not only did God choose to welcome us into his family, we get to choose Him too. Encourage them to always choose to allow the Spirit to dwell within them.

The Holy Spirit might be a difficult subject to broach with children, but it doesn’t have to be. The best way for children to understand the Holy Spirit is experiencing Him for themselves. Emulate a spirit-filled life and, more than likely, you will have kids who seek spirit-filled lives, too.

Michelle S. Lazurek is an award-winning author, speaker, pastor's wife, and mother. Winner of the Golden Scroll Children's Book of the Year, the Enduring Light Silver Medal and the Maxwell Award, she is a member of the Christian Author's Network and the Advanced Writers and Speakers Association. She is also an associate literary agent with Wordwise Media Services. For more information, please visit her website at michellelazurek.com.

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Originally published Thursday, 09 May 2019.