Starting on Monday, I began something new at our house. We started having a family devotion time every evening after dinner. I was thinking about this one day and thought, "I do a quiet time and devotion time daily, I should do something with the kids as well." I tossed the idea around for awhile, just sort of mulling it over...until on Mother's Day at church our pastor said something during the sermon about having family devotion time. Of course, this pricked my heart and my ears perked up (not that I wasn't listening or anything!). He talked about what a blessing it could be for a family, and that it doesn't have to be a long, drawn out thing...just 5 minutes is fine! So I started looking for some books or something to guide me to do daily devotions with my kids...let me tell you, I had no idea just how many family devotion books are out there! I wound up at amazon, and before I knew it, I had purchased 4 books!
- Sticky Situations - A short story with a quiz for every day of the year with Scripture reading and explanations for every day. This takes VERY LITTLE time, but my kids really liked this one!
- Fun & Active Devotions for Kids - Again, laid out in the year January 1 - December 31 format, very helpful. Short and each day has an activity that corresponds with the story and Scripture. We LOVE activities around here!
- As For Me and My House - Longer devotionals, most with activities from "Birth Order" to "Complaining" to "Do Not Worry." Again, fun activites keep kids engaged and interested!
- 52 Fun Family Devotions - Slightly longer devotionals with a little preparation due to the activities, but totally worth it! It was a favorite last night...got my first "Aha!" moment from my 13 year old!
The first evening we sat down to do this, was different. I was nervous at how the kids (the boys, mainly) would react...after all, it's not like mom was taking them out to hunt deer or gig fish. But I just tried to keep the word "obedience" fresh on my mind, knowing that I am doing my God-given duty to "train my children in the way they should go." So there was the usual joking and giggling the first evening, but nothing too extreme. And it didn't take too long, just about 10-15 minutes.
Last night I called to the kids and told them to come on we're going to do our devotion and they came running into the kitchen asking if we can do one with an activity this time. Of course! Whatever it takes to get kids interested in God is what I believe should be done. You have to GET them there first; the teaching and preaching can and will follow. But you can't do the teaching and preaching if they aren't even there to begin with! So I chose an devotion about peer pressure with an activity involving putting popsicles into the microwave as the "trendy new dessert." My kids watched me with funny looks on their faces as I had them bring up popsicles from the freezer and then proceeded to put them in to the microwave! The bottom line is: just because something is supposed to be the "cool" thing to do, doesn't mean it's very smart. That it's often like trying to eat microwaved popsicles...it's just not what the maker intended. This is what got the "Aha!" moment from my teenager...which I loved. They really liked the activity, and whether they heard me or not, they sat still for the Scripture and prayer. I am aiming to do these every weekday evening and see how it goes. I'm going to crack open a book now and find a really cool activity for this evening...they requested it! Praise God!!
Have a great day ya'll! The week is halfway over...yay!!