Do You Desire To Bring Your Child Into The Kingdom?

It's hard enough to be a Christian parent in this world. How do we combat the forces of evil while at the same time raise our children to desire to walk in God's light? By seeking His face, His Word and inspiration from each other as we stumble through this parenting process together. You will find all the instruction, encouragement and resources you need right here at The Greatest Mission Trip You'll Ever Take to help you be the most effective witness to your child that God would have you be. Look around and come back often. Let's learn together.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

How Much Time Should A Family Devotion Take Initially?

photo by geishaboy500
For those who are just beginning family devotions and for those who have young children, short and sweet is our repeating refrain. Our goal is to develop this time of family learning and sharing into a habit that is enjoyed by all, and hopefully eagerly anticipated. Ten or fifteen minutes is a good timeframe to shoot for in the beginning.

In that space of time, you can:

  • Read a story from a children’s Bible to your preschooler or early elementary aged child and tie it in with how much Jesus loves/cares/provides for us.

  • Read a chapter from a book of the Bible to your later elementary and older child and ask for his summarization of it. Add your thoughts on it as well.

  • Read a section from a chapter (usually headed with a subtitle) and get into deeper discussion of the concept being taught and how it applies to everyday life. This would work best with middle and high school children.
  • Work with a student devotional book, which often has short teachings and a couple of discussion questions included. My caution here is not to substitute these for actual Bible reading. Use them with the Bible or as an occasional break to do something different, but never solely instead of. It’s like always eating hotdogs when you should be concentrating on real meat.

Develop a set time for coming together for these devotions. This has to be a planned, deliberate undertaking, or too many loopholes and distractions will short-circuit the effort. Set a D-Day on your calendar, talk it up amongst yourselves, and then do it. Center it around a meal, do it right after dinner, right before bedtime, or if need be, right before everyone heads out the door in the morning for school and work (I know, we’re talking about getting up earlier here, but hey, God doesn’t sleep).

As your family becomes more comfortable with the habit and as you all begin to develop a relationship with God’s Word, you will find your time extending or the conversation bleeding over into other times of the day. In other words, you may find yourself in dialogue with your child as opposed to a one-sided exchange. Wonderful! You’ve just been blessed by God with an awesome gift - a deepening relationship with your child. Enjoy it for the reward that it is.

Related Articles:

Freeing Up Our Time, Part 1

Freeing Up Our Time, Part 2

Freeing Up Our Time, Part 3

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