Are Family Devotions Needed?
Is taking your children to worship twice on Sunday and then again on Wednesday enough or are family devotions needed too? I was recently asked this question in a mom’s meeting. I had to pause and give my response a little thought because I do tend to snap back with sarcasm when put on the spot and I didn’t want to come across as snarky to this group of young mothers.
So what do you think?
My personal belief is that I need daily time in prayer and communication with my Heavenly Father. I also believe that the way He communicates with us is through the Word, The Bible. So if everything I need to know is in the Bible, how could I ever have enough of it?
Our family is blended. We had at one time his, hers and theirs. Not quite the Brady Bunch but our children were close enough in age that when we cross adopted them they were all within five years of each other in age…then we added the two extras bringing our crew to a total of seven. Our children are Brian, Katrina, Wendy, Derek, Elizabeth, Rebekah and Meagan. Crazy times with 5 females and 2 males growing up together in an ex-military home. Camp Wilson was the homestead nickname and it was probably well deserved.
We raised our children in the church. We are one of those families that are at the building whenever the doors are open and then usually several more times a week in meetings, play groups and other events.
Even with all this exposure to the Word, each of our children had to come to their own decision when it came to their position on salvation and eternity. It didn’t matter how much I or their father knew about the Word or how much time we spent in prayer.
In order to prepare our children for the decision of their lifetime, we studied the Bible together when they were young. As they got older, their homeschooling curriculum also included Bible study. Once they could read well enough and understand what they were reading; they were encouraged to have a private time each day where they would read the Bible and pray.
While I would have loved to have had a family devotion every night with our children; our lifestyle didn’t allow for it. Dad was gone from Sunday to Saturday most weeks and when he was home on the weekend we were busy as a family or preparing for worship on Sunday.
Do I think it is beneficial for families to have devotions together? Oh yeah! First I believe that it puts Dad in a position of responsibility in teaching his family what the Bible says. He is after all responsible to God for the way his family goes. Secondly, spending time studying and praying together makes thee family unit stronger. I do encourage newly married couples to start their marriage off with devotions and to make time for them as their family starts to grow.
Now that five, soon to be six of our seven children will be married, both my husband and I pray for them and their family daily. I try to have devotions with the local girls as often as possible but I know that I need to step up more in this area.
Another question I was asked was if it mattered what version of the Bible was used in devotions?
I use the Kings James version as my personal study Bible and have had the same one since 1984. I have notes and prayers written in it that mean a great deal to me.
I also have the ESV (English Standard Version) Family Devotional Bible. I like to use this one when I a studying with children or ladies that are of a different faith base (or a non believer). This version contains Bible stories along with illustrations. It is nice when teaching children or those that are not ready to sit down and pour over scripture.
Each of the devotions includes a scripture passage reading, a devotion or summary of what the passage means, questions for the family to create discussion, and a key verse that’s perfect to use as a memory verse. The devotions are from both the Old and New Testament, but each story ties back to Christ.
The ESV Family Devotional Bible is designed to help families read and apply God’s Word together. This full-color edition features the complete ESV text interspersed with engaging illustrations and gospel-centered devotions related to key Bible stories—guiding families through the entirety of God’s Word over the course of a year.
So my answer would be a solid YES that family devotions are needed. Even when you can’t have the whole family together, gather those you can and spend time in the Word together. As a parent, you are planting those seeds that will one day develop into the thoughts and patterns your child will use to guide them in their decision making as an adult.
Do you have a family devotional Bible? We are giving away two here on Simply Sherryl. One if for you and the other for someone you will select.
Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post. Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway. If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller / FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to win. Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.