3. Welcome Their Questions
Questions come with the territory, and the older kids get, the harder they can be to answer. One thing we never want to do is shut down their questions with responses like “because the Bible says so” or “just have faith and don’t question it.” While our intentions may be good, this can discourage our kids from coming to us openly if they’re ever having doubts about their beliefs.
Ephesians 6:4 says, “Fathers, don’t stir up anger in your children, but bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.” I don’t know about you, but when I feel like my concerns are being overlooked, it doesn’t make me very happy. We don’t want to cause our kids to feel this way.
Always leave room for questions and be willing to shift the focus if a conversation takes an unexpected turn. Remember, meet them where they are. There will be times when we don’t have an immediate answer. That’s okay! As long as we’re growing in our personal knowledge of God, we get to walk alongside them.
One subject I consider vital, especially for older children, is Christian apologetics. It deals with many areas of science and history and how all these things point to Christ. As parents, we have a huge role to play in directing our children to truth. That’s not to say we have to be experts on every subject. Who has time for that?
We do what we can while praying and trusting God with the outcome. Kids just want to know we’re listening and we care. So be eager to hear their questions, even the tough ones that leave you scratching your head.
When you study the Bible at a speed that works for your family, remain open-minded about worship, and keep a listening ear for questions, your children will soon come to enjoy family devotions. In the midst of all our busyness it can be easy to outsource all things spiritual to the local church, but you can do this! Imagine raising a family that’s so full of Jesus at home that you go to church ready to pour out to new believers and uplift your community.
Things are only awkward when they are unfamiliar. Think about it - discussing school or what’s for dinner feels comfortable because those are routine conversations. The difference between the kindergartener crying at drop-off and the 1st grader excitedly waving goodbye as she runs to meet her friends is simply time. The more we do anything, the more comfortable it becomes. Family devotions may take time to become a norm in your home, but they’ll soon be second nature when you continue doing them regularly.
As our families grow, we’ll have to adapt our devotions again and again. Just know, our kids will always pick up on what we are passionate about. Our family’s spiritual life is a reflection of our own. When we stand humbly in agreement with Joshua and say “as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord” (Joshua 24:15, ESV), God will direct our steps in leading family devotions that draw us all closer to Him.
Lord, thank You for blessing me with this family. I know You love them more than I ever could. Please help me to lead them to You, and show me ways to reach them for Your glory. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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