Having family devotions will greatly impact your children. We started when our children were too young to even remember us reading the Bible and praying to them. It is not wise to wait until you think they will understand; their spirit man will still be getting fed. If you begin this routine with your young ones when they are still babies they will grow up knowing what is normal. You will instill a Biblical worldview into them and influence them for the kingdom of God when they are at their most impressionable age.
We gather as a family every day (except Sunday) for devotions, usually right after breakfast. If we are running late that day we change the time to right after dinner, rather than trying to short change God in the morning. We begin by my husband reading aloud from the Bible, then we pray individually. Yes, the prayer time is sometimes a challenge, but with anything else you train a child to do it takes effort and patience. We teach them to honor God and each other during the prayer time by sitting still with their heads bowed and their hands to themselves or folded.
It has been quite hilarious to listen to a little child pray. Without fail my son will thank God for each individual family member and himself! Ha! We’ve had to curtail the laundry list of toys they thank God for, too, but you have got to love a child’s heart.
Childhood is the fiery furnace in which we are melted down to essentials and that essential shaped for good. ~Katherine Anne Porter
Sometimes we will also sing a few worship songs, and mix up both songs for kids and ones we sing during corporate worship at church. During this time we encourage our boys to play instruments, sing, clap their hands, raise their hands, dance and give verbal praises to God. (I do have to say that after my trips to Australia years ago I cut out the hokey American kick dance in exchange for the Aussie hop. It’s way cooler.) Most of the time we will put on a worship DVD during family worship time to pour more anointing and influence right into our family room.
Setting the example at home for seeking God is one that will flow right into how they seek God at church. We have a long way to go with our children, but each time we meet I know we are making a valuable deposit into their little spirits. If you still have children living with you then you have an important responsibility to train them up in the way they should go (Proverbs 22:6). I want to encourage you to have family devotions or begin right away if you haven’t already.
Question: What is your family devotions like?