2. For religiously connected children, our study also suggests a potential disconnect between what they are taught and their intrinsic experiences. In other words, perhaps the religiously connected children have learned that spiritual health should be important in their lives and so reported "the right answer." The non-connected participants may not have had similar patterns of teaching, and so reported the importance of spiritual health less often. But it is beyond intriguing that this non-connected group experiences the positive effects of spiritual health in a more robust way than their involved peers. Religious leaders take heed. This might just mean that rather than telling our children what is important, it is more helpful to actually create spaces to nurture the spiritual lives of children in real time. Maybe this means less talk and more connection. More time in nature. More intentionally nurturing relationships between young and old. Less talk about God, or the divine, or whatever you want to talk about… and more time to engage.
Children have an innate spirituality that is a gift to adults. But when we consider children's spirituality, we need to do so in ways that also contribute to the flourishing of children.