Explaining This War to Our Children
As parents and families worldwide watch the details of this unprovoked attack by the Russian government on Ukraine play out, it is time for us to keep our children calm. After the far-reaching impact of COVID-19, our children are already feeling high levels of anxiety, worry and fear. Here are some things to consider, some things to encourage your children to pray, helpful Bible verses and closing thoughts to help you explain this war to your children.
Things to Consider
- Consider the child’s age – if 7 and under, consider not speaking about it unless they ask. Kids may struggle to process issues that are this complex.
- Keep dialogue simple – if a child is 8 and over, they will probably hear what is going on from social media or school. Keep the discussion simple. Who is fighting who and (very basically) why. War has been fought throughout history, but peace will come. Encourage them to pray for peace.
- Keep the news on for short times – when children see war scenes or hear about war repeatedly, they can get traumatised. Consider keeping yourself updated on your mobile devices or TV for short times.
- Avoid political and divisive discussions – children often repeat what they hear. Try and avoid having those discussions around them.
Encourage Children to Pray
Now is an excellent time to encourage your children to pray for peace and read scripture to help them with their anxiety and worry.
War has been fought throughout history, but peace will come.
Bible Verses For Kids
Here are three Bible verses for you to pray and help your children memorise for anxiety and worry…
1 Peter 5:6-7
‘Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.’
‘Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.’
‘The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous man runs into it and is safe.’
‘The peace of God…will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.’
God of love,
We pray for peace in our world and an end to war.
Instead of hatred, let there be love.
Shelter your children and protect us.
Guide us and keep us from harm, so we can build a world of love and live our lives in peace.
In Jesus’ name,