I am THRILLED to share we have a guest post today by one of my nearest and dearest mommy friends. Transplanted from Florida to Texas, mom of 4 littles, part home schooler, lover of all things women’s ministry & english & ohhhhhhhhh, how you would love her scratch made chunky cheese bread!! She is a true lover of all things Jesus and sets the bar high for all around her as she invests in her kiddos. As we mill over HOW we can give our lives and WHAT we can give to others this season, I think you will not just find a great resource to give below but encouragement in the daily give. Enjoy every word friends, Kell.
A theology worth singing is a theology worth having.
It never fails to surprise me. After cereal eaten, teeth brushed, shirts tucked (or not), shoes tied (or not), amidst the clamoring and sometimes wailing that is the early morning “get-out-of-house” rush, once all five of us have gotten in our seats and pulled out of the drive—me, glancing at the clock to see please, Lord, are we on time?—a holy hush descends upon the minivan. For the space of a thirty-minute commute to school, we will sing, or just listen, we will talk or stay quiet, and my spirit will stir and my heart be filled. We will redeem the once-more drive, singing our theology.
What we sing is our catechism. Questions and answers of what we believe. Questions and answers of What is this faith? Questions and answers about atonement, covenant, commandments. Deep questions and beautiful answers. Sometimes joyful, sometimes solemn. Clapping and tapping or still and quiet. Reveling in an all-knowing, all-seeing, all-powerful God or mournfully contemplating the cost of sin.
Catechism is a systematic series of questions and answers. “Who made you?” “God.” “Catechism” comes from a Greek word meaning “instruction,” and specifically instruction that comes by word of mouth. It is a great tool to help cover topics like the Trinity or the reason why God gave us the Ten Commandments. By memorizing this set of questions and answers, our children have a foundation of theological knowledge so they can know God and love God. But rather than dogmatically insisting a child memorize and recite by rote, parents enter into a conversation with a shared lexis to help their child understand Biblical principles. Often when one of my children has a question about God, I take them through the relevant catechism questions and answers, leading them to discover based on what they already know about God.
There is time and place for this instruction—in the morning, at night, at the kitchen table, or under blankets in bed—to fully teach by word of mouth and explain and illuminate by the light of Scripture. But it is also a glorious thing to sing, to sing our theology. To sing it in the quiet pause before school or on the way to dance or to and from the grocery store—as we drive “by the way” (Deuteronomy 6:7). Even without their realization, my children are being catechized, instructed. And I receive the blessing of hearing those small, sweet voices quietly singing, “What does it mean to believe in Christ? What does it mean to believe in Christ? To trust in Christ alone for my salvation.” Over and again, they hear and sing the words to the questions and answers that have been recited by generations, each listening another time for those words and concepts to penetrate their minds and hearts. And learning that their great God is worth singing about.
Ask Me Whooo music series, volumes 1-3 by Diana Beach Batarseh
Diana Beach Batarseh, along with talented musicians and her own children, sings the questions and answers adapted from The Children’s First Catechism. Each of the seventy-four songs is followed by Scripture that affirms the theological concept. You can find more about Diana’s work and music at http://askmewhooo.com/.
Mother and son team Susan Hunt and Richie Hunt use stories of siblings Caleb and Cassie to illustrate the concepts found in the catechism questions and answers, helping young children apply them to their daily lives. Each lesson includes simple discussion questions and prayer prompts.