“Mum, look at my presentation!” Clarence said proudly. The 12-year-old had prepared a presentation on the environmental problems in India for his geography class, and had found detailed statistics, pictures, and video clips online. “You put this together in two hours? It looks professional!” said his mum, Winnie. “Yes, I just searched the internet,” Clarence replied. “It was easy!”

It’s mind-boggling just how much information can be found online. Today, children have unprecedented access to a universe of knowledge online.

As a result, younger kids can learn to read, write, and count on screens, while older kids can use apps to solve algebra problems or pick up drumming through video tutorials. There are countless websites on current affairs, history, arts and culture, and science and technology—many of them geared towards children.

Screens are becoming our children’s primary way of accessing knowledge. Don’t know how to boil an egg? Want to learn more about your favourite band? Need to find the best public transport route to a new place? Just google it! Children are turning to screens as their go-to, first-stop, real-time source of knowledge.


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God’s Wisdom on Our Screens

Having access to information can be helpful, but more knowledge does not necessarily mean more wisdom. God’s Word tells us what wisdom is:

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. (Proverbs 9:10)

The heart of wisdom is fear of the Lord. A wise person desires to please God in thought, word, and deed. Being wise means being able to discern what pleases God.

Wisdom includes making God-pleasing choices regarding what we view on our screens.

How does this apply to our discussion on screens? Knowledge appears on screens in the form of text, images, video, and music. Helping our children become wise means guiding them to understand that not everything we see on screen honours God.

Wisdom includes making God-pleasing choices regarding what we view on our screens, because we want to honour God above all else.

Nurturing God’s Wisdom in Our Kids

Children love to learn and explore. Their curiosity knows no bounds. But knowledge without God- pleasing discernment can be a recipe for disaster.

Seven-year-old Alyssa often played with Caden at school. Some of their classmates teased them, saying, “Caden is Alyssa’s boyfriend!” They made kissing sounds whenever the two walked by. One day, Alyssa looked up “kiss” on the internet using her father’s tablet. “What are you looking at?” Joe, Alyssa’s father, was horrified to find her watching a video she had clicked on innocently.

In a world of easily-accessed knowledge, it becomes all the more important for us to nurture godly wisdom in our children, and to start early.

Ultimately, it is a wise heart—the ability to discern what pleases God and what doesn’t—that will serve as the foundation for making God-honouring choices on their own.

The greater their access to knowledge, the greater their need for wisdom. Parental controls and filters that prevent our kids from accessing age-inappropriate material may be useful, but they are not foolproof; more importantly, they do not develop wisdom in our children’s hearts.

Ultimately, it is a wise heart—the ability to discern what pleases God and what doesn’t—that will serve as the foundation for making God-honouring choices on their own.

Talk to Your Kids

To nurture God-pleasing discernment, we need to engage our children through ongoing conversation. Try talking about these topics with your kids:

a. Knowledge is prized, but having the wisdom to honour God is greater.

What’s the difference between knowledge and wisdom? Discuss some examples that will show the difference clearly. What does the Bible say about where wisdom comes from?

b. Not everything you read, look at, or listen to will honour God.

Ask your children about things they’ve come across on their screen that may not be honouring to God. Read through a news web- site together with your child and discuss why it may not be God-pleasing to click on every news article, flashing ad, and video clip that pops up. Discuss what you can do when you come across something that dishonours God.

c. Just because you can click on something doesn’t mean you should.

What’s the difference between “can” and “should”? Do you consider God when deciding to do something?

d. If we’re not sure whether something is wise, to whom should we turn?

Make it clear to your children that you are their first-stop, go-to, real- time source of wisdom. And that your source of wisdom is the Bible—not the internet.


This article has been extracted from Help! My Kids Want More Screen Time, published by Our Daily Bread Ministries. To read the booklet, go to https://biblical-parenting.org/bwfp-resources/help-my-kids-want-more-screen-time/


Ruth Wan-Lau has spent over a decade working in publishing. She is a children’s book author who has written over 30 books, including the well-known Timmy and Tammy series. Ruth and her husband are blessed with three amazing children.
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