Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Devotions for Little Kids

Riley (5), Malia (3) and Lucas (10months) love this devotional book!! It's a simple 2-3 min read along with a song that reinforces the story. We play a song on the CD player while they lay down and settle in for the night and it helps them to have a bedtime routine.

One night, Riley said, "Mom, would you tell us the story about Ruth & Naomi again?" I thought I'd have to bring it down to their level so I proceeded to tell them about how Ruth said she would follow Naomi and help her. Riley interrupted me and said, "That's not how it goes. Ruth says, 'Your people will be my people and your God will be my God.'"
I guess they're learning a lot more than I realize.
And, they're growing SOOO fast!!

How do you do devotions as a family?



  1. Thanks for sharing a bit about family devotions at your house, Sharina.

    My daughter is 9, and my son is 12. When my kids were younger, reading Bible stories and praying together as a family was a regular part of our bedtime routine. As the kids started reading on their own, however, we slipped out of that routine. We still pray together as a family, but we don’t have family devotions.

    Instead, it has seemed more natural to shift the focus to the individual discipling of each of our children. Here is what that looks like right now with our son. He has an interest in how the world works and asks lots of questions while watching TV. My husband is incredible at turning those questions into teachable moments. For example, the inevitable “why aren’t there any dinosaurs in the Bible” came up last week during a Discovery show that touched on evolution. We recently came across Lee Strobel’s apologetics series for tweens/early teens and plan to introduce him to that resource.

    In addition, our son has an artistic bent. On a friend’s recommendation, we bought the Manga Messiah series, a Manga comic book version of the Bible commissioned by missionaries to Japan. Those comics have captured his imagination, and we recently had a neat conversation about how his drawings were a response to what he read, and in that sense an act of worship.

    We also try to share with our children what God is teaching us in our personal devotions. (However, I’m not as intentional about that as I should be.)

    In the past couple of years, we have made an occasional stab at family devotions. Those times were flat – our kids seemed to feel that we were talking at them, rather than talking to/with them.

    I would love to hear what other families with older children do. Do you have a structured family devotion time? If so, what does that look like?

  2. Structure? O, boy.
    Well, actually - two boys.
    That seems to be our biggest challenge in family devotions. The boys.
    We gather as a family and read from the Bible, try to have some form of meaningful discussion about what we've read, and then we pray. Sometimes it goes really well.
    But other times?
    One of my favorite ways to spend time in scripture is doing Lectio Divina - more of a meditative way of reading. And sometimes I do a simplified version of this with the kids. (Mine are 14, 12, and 9, by the way.) They seem to enjoy it, too.
    But, like anything else, it doesn't always come together as 'nicely' as I'd like.

    Honestly, I think the most important thing for us to do is to be faithful. Some things are going to work well, and some things are not. And some of the things that worked well last week will surely flop next week.

    BUT, God will still be the same, and His grace will still be big enough for us. And I am still going to be depending on Him fully - to grow my children into the adults He has planned for them to be.

    It's good to be on this journey with you!


  3. Karen,

    Thanks so much for sharing!!! I really benefit from hearing others' experiences.

    Like you, I've made Lectio Divina a part of my personal quiet time. I had never thought of sharing this spiritual discipline with my kids! What a great idea.

    Thanks, too, for the encouragement - the marvelous reminder that what God asks of me is faithfulness.