Last week, I checked out an America-themed book from the library. As I read it to my kids before bedtime, I got tears in my eyes as the book showed the statue of the soldiers pushing up the flag at Iwo Jima. It honestly puts tears in my eyes thinking about it now!
Our flag is a symbol of sacrifice, valor, protection, courage, victory and more. We recognize that the flag isn’t what we honor, but what the flag represents.
If you’ve still got some flags hanging around from Independence Day, you can use it to help your kids understand honoring and respecting God, too.
Grab a flag and ask your kids, “What would you do if we were in a big room and someone brought a big flag in?” They should say, “Turn and look at it. Stop talking. Put my hand on my heart.” Or something similar. Then ask, “What if we were all sitting down and someone brought a flag out. What might we do?” Hopefully they’ll say, “Stand up.” Ask a few more questions like, “What if you had a hat on?” (Take it off.) or “Do you know any songs about the flag?” (Maybe they’ll sing one for you?)
You can then talk about how we don’t do these things because the flag is so special but to honor the special things our past countrymen, founding fathers and military have done for us–protecting us, sacrificing themselves, etc.
Now ask, “Who else do we know that has protected us? Sacrificed his life for us?” (The should say Jesus!) Explain that just as we honor the flag with our actions, we can do the same for Jesus. Read the following verses and ask your kids to demonstrate and act out the action in each one:
Psalm 30:4 “Sing the praises of the LORD, you his faithful people; praise his holy name.”
Psalm 149:3 “Let them praise his name with dancing…”
Psalm 47:1 “Clap your hands, all you nations; shout to God with cries of joy.”
Psalm 46:10 “Be still, and know that I am God;”
Psalm 63:4 “I will praise you as long as I live, and in your name I will lift up my hands.”
Psalm 81:2 “Begin the music, strike the timbrel, play the melodious harp and lyre.”
Psalm 95:6 “Come, let us bow down in worship, let us kneel before the LORD our Maker;”
If your kids are feeling spunky, there should be some pretty fun acting going on while you read these verses. Hopefully they can see how fun it is to worship and honor God with every part of themselves!
And maybe the next time they see an American flag, they’ll remember to honor and worship their real hero, Jesus!