5 Ways to Experience Family Devotions by AChuckAllen
As a parent and a grandparent, I’ve had my fair share of seasons that I wondered if I could be any worse as a parent. Now that all of our girls are “grown-ups,” I still occasionally wonder if I did everything that I could have done. I don’t think that I’ll ever be able to answer that. I know this, they are far better kids that I was, and they all are on uniquely different paths in their emotional, spiritual and developmental journey.
I am often asked how to “do family devotions.” Let me say that I was truly not a
model of excellence in this effort, but I have observed and experienced a few things along the way with our daughters…all six of them.
- Don’t try to force a book or a systematic process that doesn’t work for you and your kids. Don’t force a time or a schedule. Simply be consistent in your own life. If you want you kids to believe in the power of prayer, let them experience you praying over them. If you want them to grow up reading and trusting the Bible, let them see you read and trust the Bible. Did I mention that I have had many, many seasons of abject failure as a parent?
- Speak of the things of God openly with your kids. When you see a beautiful sky, point out the glory of His work. When your cat has kittens, speak of how God’s creation is fascinating. When you are on the beach, thank God for His gift to us. When our kids see and hear us speak openly on the things of God, our kids will begin looking for them as well.
- Pray with your kids about things other than meals. Yes, prayer before a meal is a great start, but to stop and pray before they get on the bus? That’s the stuff that will stay with them when they have their kids.
- Use Right Now Media, which is free to you, if you are a part of our Sugar Hill Church family. There are dozens and dozens of kids media tools to help you deliver exceptional content to your family. Need help getting that set up? Just email Bobby@SugarHillChurch.com and he will get you going. This is a great resource.
- If your family does have the capacity and ability to actually have a set time, in a season where that works for you, good for you! If so, use the stories of Jesus found in the Gospels. If I could do one thing differently, and only one thing with my kids when they were younger? I would have stayed in the Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John) far more than I did. Let the stories of Jesus and His teachings saturate your kids and your family to their bones. You’ll be so glad that you did.
The most important thing to remember? Stay at it. Keep the things and ways of the Divine in front of your children, in every possible way, especially through you!