As parents of little children, we continually struggle to keep our family devotions on track. We have friends that talk about how great their family devotions are, and if you’re like them, praise the Lord! For us, finding time to get the whole family together is the least of our problems. The real problem is keeping children of different ages interested in what we’re doing.
Ben (8 years old) is always ready to learn and has become quite a good participant in our devotional time. Calie (5 Years old) has a hard time paying attention, can’t wait to be done and never remembers what we are talking about. Levi (16 Months) is usually walking around pointing at stuff and has yet to learn to talk.
If you’re anything like us, here are 5 tips to get the most out of family devotions.
1. Have a set time!
I know, it’s on everyone’s list and it seems so simple and obvious. Yet, for some reason, many of us have a hard time setting a time. Life tends to get in the way! Our good friends always have devotions in the morning when they wake up, but I leave for work as early as 6:00am, so this wouldn’t work for us.
What we have tried to do is make devotions part of our going to bed routine. Every night we sit down at the table and do devotions before we brush teeth and get jammies on.
This might not work for you. Maybe dad works the swing shift, or maybe the kids are too exhausted at the end of the day. That’s fine, just try to find a time of the day that works for your family, then stick to it.
2. Use a kid’s book
Finding the right kids book for devotions can be difficult. If you’re part of a denomination it might be a bit easier to find something that suits you, but authors have theological views just like you and I do. With that said, having something that is specifically geared towards kids can really help get the kids involved. We are currently going through a book called The Ology. It is basic and each lesson is quite short.
3. Read the Bible but don’t be afraid to skip
It might sound heretical, but even I can get a bit bored reading through 7 chapters of chronology in 1 Chronicles. Reading the Bible should always be a part of our devotions. I like to read a short passage and then ask the kids several easy questions about what we read. I also try to look ahead and see if there are going to be parts the kids will get lost in. If there are, I skip and try to keep the kids focused.
4. Use songs and videos
One reason my daughter gets lost is that she learns differently than my son. Calie loves to sing. In fact, she sings so much that my 16-month-old dances to her constantly, and people in Costco always give compliments to the never-ending soundtrack of our lives. Calie might get lost in the readings, but she can sing you the books of the bible, the fruits of the Spirit, and much more. Whenever we pull out the phone to play a song or video, Calie is the one who wants to choose what we listen to.
5. Use a checklist/Devotional guide to keep you on track
Having a worksheet to fill out can, not only, keep you on track but can get the kids excited too. We have created a family devotional guide to help you stay on track. Grab some stickers from the store and let your kids mark what you did in the night. The worksheet covers a full week, so print out as many as you want and make sure the kids get to help fill them out.
We hope at least one of these tips will bring your family devotions to the next level and help you get the most out of your family time with the Lord.
Here are some resources on our site:
- Find audio sermons and lectures on our GIM Audio page. Listen anytime for free by Clicking Here.
- If you are looking for in-depth studies, guides, or helpful resources to walk out your faith, you can visit our Resources page. This page continues to grow as we create more great resources.
- Free Course! We are constantly working on different courses that will dive into a theological subject. We have already produced a course on the formation of the Bible which you can take FREE of charge by Clicking Here.