As Christians parents, it is our job to teach our children about our faith in Christ.
Proverbs 22:6 encourages us to, “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.”
One of the best ways to do that is by having a family devotional or bible study time.
5 Steps To Starting A Family Bible Study
1. Pray About It.
As with anything that we do. We should always take it to the Lord in prayer.
He will direct your path and give you wisdom on how to lead and guide your family.
2. Make Family Bible Study a Priority.
Our children take note of what we as parents value as important.
If we don’t make it a priority, then our children won’t make it a priority.
Try to schedule bible study at a time when the whole family can participate.
Here are a few more tips to help you get started:
- Set a specific time.
- Decide how often you will have bible study. (daily, weekly, etc.)
- Start and end on time.
- Create rules to help manage discussions and to minimize shenanigans.
Whatever you decide to do make sure you stick to it.
There will probably be a few hiccups at the start, but let that discourage you.
3. Start Your Children Early.
What age should you start doing devotionals with your child?
This is probably one of the most common questions I see in parenting groups.
The answer to that question is right away.
One of the myths that parents believe is that their kids are too young to understand the bible.
Most children can understand the basic principles of Christianity.
As long as it’s age-appropriate and engaging you will be alright.
You do not have to have an hour-long bible study with your children.
You do not have to have fill in the blank sheets, coloring pages, or bible quiz for your kids to do.
Maybe one day you’ll get there, and family bible study will become a big event in your household.
But for right now a 5-minute devotional and prayer before bedtime is a good starting place.
5. Decide on What You Will Do.
What should you do with your kids during this time?
It’s really up to you.
Here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Begin and end with prayer.
- Discuss what happened during the day and what you are grateful for.
- Discuss what your kids learned during children’s church or youth group this week.
- Pick a verse of the week to memorize and apply. Discuss how they applied it during the week.
- Bible journal with your kids.
- Ask open-ended questions about world issues and discuss what the bible says about these issues.
6. Have Fun & Be Authentic.
If you’re not excited about family bible study, your kids won’t be either.
So get excited.
Add a few fun activities every now and then.
Instead of doing a normal devotional go for a nature walk, play a bible trivia game, watch a youtube video, etc.
Be authentic with your kids.
It’s okay to tell your kids that you don’t know the answer to a question.
Show them that you are learning and growing in your faith just like they are.
This is an excellent time to point them back to the word of God and the power of prayer.
Don’t expect your kids to give you biblical answers to questions.
Especially, when they are young or even as teenagers.
As a parent, I want to know how my child feels and thinks about the issues going on in our world.
That way I can point them back to Christ and the word of God.
7. Remember Your Purpose for Bible Study
Speaking of world issues always remember what your purpose for family bible study is.
It’s to teach your children the word of God so that they will:
- Grow in their faith,
- understand and have a biblical worldview,
- learn how to live in a fallen world,
- and know how to love people as Christ loved us.
Side Note: When dealing with tough matters like abortion, homosexuality, and transgender identity, always speak with grace and love about these matters.
Many of our children may be dealing with these very issues without our knowledge.
Always remind them that God loves and cares for all people.
Children are a gift from God; they are a reward from him.Ps 127:3, NLT
God has given us these little people to care for and to show them the way to Christ.
One of the ways we can do that is by coming together regularly as a family to study his word.
Nobody has a perfect bible study all the time.
Expect your kids to act up at some point.
The conversations that you have with your kids during this time will stick with them.
Even if they act like they’re not listening or don’t care.
If you keep at it, you will see the fruits of your labor.
Just one more reminder before I go.
While family bible study is important, we as parents must live out of faith in front of our children.
If you’re still on the fence about starting a family bible study, read this post on myths parents believe about family devotionals.
Does your family do a weekly or daily devotional? Why or why not? Tell me about it in the comments section.
As always keep Jesus in the center of everything you do.
Your sister in Christ,