SGL: “Is there anything that anyone would like us to pray for this week?”
5 year old girl: “Yes. My mom’s doggie is very very sick. She is very sad.”
SGL: “ Oh, I’m so sorry. Did you know that God cares even for our animals? He cares about everything! ”
5 year old girl: “He does? That means He could make him all better then.”
While a beloved pet that is sick is a hard thing for anyone, this story has a funny ending. The SGL followed up on this prayer request and called her mom during the week to check in. Now here’s the funny part, the dog had passed away several years prior to this little girl even being born. (Cue giggling) While this story seems silly, I realized that it was still an incredible teachable moment in their small group that day. Her SGL let her know that God cares even for the animals. He cares about everything! And judging by her response, she didn’t know that.
It’s important to remind our preschoolers that they can talk to God about anything. After all, He made them and everything else. He wants to hear from them—even if it is about a pet that passed away years ago. We should be encouraging our preschoolers to present their thoughts, their fears, their worries, their ouchies and their sillies all to a God that loves and cares about them greatly. Some of these preschoolers are dealing with heavy situations at home. Some are lonely. Some are scared. Some are confused. I want my preschoolers to know that they can have instant dialogue with their Heavenly Father about anything.
Another important part of prayer is being thankful and thanking God. What a timely lesson during this holiday season! Teaching preschoolers to tell God what they are thankful for is a simple part of teaching them to pray. Preschoolers love to share with each other and love to share with adults. No matter what, the bottom line should always be that they can talk to God about anything because He cares for them. By leading simple prayers in SG each week, you can be one of the best examples to these little hearts on how to pray to their Heavenly Father and how He cares about everything.