Point your children’s hearts to Christ. Whenever an opportunity arises for you to share the Gospel message with your adult kids, do so, trusting that God will use your efforts by working in your children’s lives. Don’t ever be ashamed of the Gospel, because it carries God’s power for salvation. Take the risks of pursuing regular conversations with your kids about faith—even when it’s awkward or difficult to do so—because the alternative of not trying to help your kids will only lead to regrets for you and tragic spiritual consequences for your kids. Talk with your kids in person and on the phone about faith, and also engage in written conversations about faith by e-mailing, texting, or writing them notes or letters. Share stories of how God has worked in your life to help you repent and grow spiritually so they can learn from your example. Communicate your unconditional love to them that reflects God’s unconditional love for them. Invite your kids to let you know regularly what concerns they have that they’d like you to pray about, and ask them to pray for you in return. Encourage your kids to put their faith and trust in Christ alone.

Pray for a great spiritual legacy. Keep praying that God will show His glory to your adult children and draw them into relationships with them. If your kids return to faith, rejoice in the fact that everyone in their circle of influence will be blessed as a result. Ask God to give you a great spiritual legacy, expanding His kingdom through your family.

Adapted from When They Turn Away: Drawing Your Adult Child Back to Christ, copyright 2011 by Rob Rienow. Published by Kregel Publications, Grand Rapids, Mich., www.kregel.com.  

Rob Rienow (DMin., Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary) has served on the pastoral staff of Wheaton Bible Church for 18 years. His most important ministry is loving and encouraging his wife and six children to follow Christ. He and his wife, Amy, are founders of Visionary Parenting, a ministry that exists to inspire parents and equip churches to pass faith to the next generation. Rob speaks at churches and conferences around the country, serves on the Family Ministry Team for the Association of Marriage and Family Ministries, and volunteers as chaplain at The Greenhouse, a classical Christian school. Rob and his family live in Wheaton, IL. 

Whitney Hopler is a full-time freelance writer and editor.  You can visit her website at: http://whitneyhopler.naiwe.com/.