How to Use our Family Devos

The Bible says “Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.” (Proverbs 22:6) Chidren need to learn from their parents, and if we expect our children to follow God when they get older, they need to start learning about God when they are young. The parents are the ones who need to teach their children about God — not the children’s ministry at church, not their peers, not themselves and definitely not television.

FamilyDevo00Parents need to let the Bible become alive in their children’s lives. They need to discuss the Bible with their children on a regular basis and talk about how it impacts our lives. They need to talk about how we can apply Biblical principals in our lives daily. The whole family needs to help each other to live by the Bible.

Our family devos are structured into different sections.

  • Family Focus: The focus is a simple phrase describing what main focus of the week’s devotionals.
  • Godly Goal: The goal is a sentence describing the purpose or goal of the week’s devotionals.
  • Scripture of the Week: The scripture states the main focus of the week and should be used repeatedly and memorized. You can also download a printable sheet that can be used to show the family.
  • Song Suggestions: If you would like to sing to start off your devitionals, songs that follow the week’s theme are suggested. Most of the songs come from Songs of the Kingdom,published by DPI Books.
  • Daily Discussion: This section will contain a daily list of suggested questions to start a family discussion. Each day will contain two questions. The first question is usually one with simple or short answers. The second question is usually one that requires more thinking and deeper answers. Give the family time to think about their answers. You can ask more questions, but the starting two questions are good for starting the daily discussion.
  • Prayer Focus: At the end of every devotional, end with a prayer that focuses on the purpose of the week’s devotionals.
  • Ways to Build: If you would like to build upon the devotionals, or extend the lessons, or develop more advanced discussion, this section will suggest ways to modify or add on to the devotionals.

Each devotional should be led by the head of the household, but everyone in the family needs to participate. Let everyone answer the questions. Don’t give the answers. The leader can help, but you’ll be surprised at some of the great answers that children can give.

These devotionals are designed to be as short as ten minutes a day, or as long as thirty minutes a day. You can make these devotionals stand alone as a set time just for the devotional, or you can incorporate them into your daily life. As the Bible says in Deuteronomy 6, we need to talk about God’s commands “when you sit at home and when you walk along the road.”  You can do these devotionals during dinner or during a long car ride.

Do not feel guilty if your devotionals last only ten minutes a day. Many Christian families live busy lives, getting involved in church, children and parental activities, trying to balance worldly responsibilities with spiritual focus. All of these actions are what being a disciple of Christ is all about. A devotional can prepare the family for battle, but nothing can replace the actual battle itself.

These devotionals can be used for all kinds of families, and for children of all ages. Try to present the devotionals in a way that everyone can understand, but never doubt the understanding that a toddler can have about the scriptures, and never doubt the depth that a teen can handle the Bible. Have the faith that everyone in family will get something out of each devotional and learn from one another.

The best way to have devotionals is consistently. Physically, it is better to do some exercise every day than a long session once in a while. Some families keep waiting for time to magically open itself up so that they can have a long, life-changing devotional, and this waiting can turn into procrastinating, and maybe even into wishful thinking.

By having great family devotionals, a family can grow closer to God as they grow closer to one another. A family close knit with God does not need to take a lot of time and energy. It just takes a lot of family, and a lot of God. With just minutes a day, you can “start children off on the way they should go.”