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The house is calm. A cup of coffee is percolating, filling the air with a delicious aroma. I grab my basket that’s carefully stocked with my favorite Bible study books, Bible, prayer journal, and highlighters. I’m ready to hear from God, to get the manna that I so desperately need to make it through this busy season.
All is quiet until..my little man’s “Mama left me!” alarm goes off. Soon, he wakes his big brother and we’re all up. Another day, another quiet time interrupted. There are two things that you can do when this happens:
- Completely give up on spending time with the Lord
- Involve your little ones in devotions and help your children get closer to God
It’s no secret that number 2 is the better choice! I’ll be honest. Many times, my frustration has lead me to choose the first option and it benefited no one. When I chose to involve my little ones in devotions, making it a part of our daily routine, it ensures that no matter how the day goes, we all get a little bit of the Lord. Here’s how I’m making it happen:
I Let Them “Read” Their Own Devotional Books
My little ones listen better when their busy hands are allowed to do something. Normally, I let them play with blocks while we have our regular story time each day, but the Word deserves a little more reverence! I compromise by giving them their own Jesus-centered books to look at while I read from our devotional. Most of the time, I find them holding their books while listening and looking at the one that I’m reading. I like this idea because they feel a little more included and it also teaches them to have their own quiet times.
I Make it Fun
I’m always trying to come up with new ways to make our devotions fun. When you’re little, you need a little more..pizzaz to keep your interest. A few of our favorite fun things to do are to sing Bible songs, draw pictures of what we’re learning, make noises of animals and sounds that are mentioned and act out scenes with our hands. The more effort I put into making Bible time fun, the more likely they are to actually want to do it!
I Put Them Into the Story
Like I mentioned above, it helps to act out the different Bible scenes. This not only keeps them happy, but it also brings the Bible to life. They learn to see themselves in the Bible and when they get older, they’ll be able to see how they fit into the Gospel if they keep that mindset.
I Use Kid-Friendly Study Books
A lot of you are going to be on the fence with this tip. I’ve heard a lot of views that say children should be able to understand adult level books. I’ve also seen so many kid’s “Bible devotion” books that are so dumbed down that you wouldn’t even be able to tell Scripture from fairy tale. I tend to take a middle of the road approach. I make sure to read the Bible to my little guys. We might not digest the deep theological truths yet, but we read from Psalms, Proverbs and about the heroes of the Bible. I think it’s important for them to get the Word of God into their hearts, not just the opinions of other authors. When it comes to actual devotional books, however, I always choose books that are on their level.
I Give Us Grace..All the Grace
When I picture devotions, I picture kids sitting quietly, eager to learn about the Lord. I picture little hearts being stilled by the Word of God. This is a reality some days, but most days, it looks a little more like wiggly boys who want to yell. 🙂 This is where you take a deep breath, give yourself grace to not have a picture perfect moment and do your best. Whether you think it’s making an impact or not..I can assure you it is. The Word of God never comes back void and the work you’re doing in those moments is planting a seed for the future.
While it’s important for Mama’s to have time in the Word by themselves, there are some seasons of life when that is difficult. So, instead of giving up on this discipline altogether, try using these tips! It’s a common misconception that God can only speak to us through certain circumstances. The truth is, God can speak to you just as well through a simple children’s devotional than the best written theological debate.
How do you involve your littles in devotions?