Family bible study, the holy grail of Christian parenting.
What parent hasn’t imagined sitting around the table with their kids studying the bible?
Our little darlings sitting quietly and attentively as we wow them with stories from the bible and impart biblical truths to our youngsters.
Christian parenting at its finest.
Yet, for many of us, family bible studies are non-existent.
Today, we’ll look at 7 myths parents believe that keep them from studying the bible with their children.
7 Myths Parents Believe About Studying the Bible With Kids
Myth #1- The Bible is Too Complicated for Kids to Understand.
Many parents believe that the bible is too complicated for children to understand.
What I’ve learned about kids, as a teacher and a mother, is that children understand and can do more than we give them credit for.
Small children can understand the basic concepts of the bible like love, forgiveness, truth, and faith.
Older children should be able to understand the more complicated topics like salvation, sanctification, repentance, holy living, etc.
It is our job as parents to teach our children the basic foundational principles of our faith.
- Use a children’s bible or a plain English version of the bible like the CEV or ESV Bible.
- Chose an age-appropriate devotional book or lesson.
- Keep it Simple.
Myth #2- Only Pastors or Youth Leaders are Qualified to Teach Children the Bible.
This misconception is often rooted in our own lack of confidence in what we know about the bible.
There are many pastors and youth leaders that have advanced degrees in bible theology, and there are just as many that don’t.
You don’t need any sort of degree to teach your children the bible.
If we pray and ask God for wisdom, he will give us everything that we need to instruct our little ones in the ways of the Lord.
Myth #3- You Have to Have Tons of Engaging Activities.
When most people think of studying the bible with their children they think they need to have and do all of these activities to get their children engaged.
While family bible study should be fun you don’t have to make six balloon crafts and an ice cream party for it to be successful.
Trust me, your family devotional time does not have to be Pinterest worthy.
A simple family devotional that consists of reading a short passage and answering a few questions is just as powerful as a bible study with all the bells and whistles.
The real key to success is making sure that whatever you’re doing is age-appropriate.
Myth #4- My Kids Can Learn Everything They Need to Know from Children’s Church.
Yes, kids can learn about the bible and how to be a Christian from Children’s church and youth group.
However, the bible does not instruct the church to teach them the way they should go, but the parents.
These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. “Deuteronomy 6: 6-7,NIV
It is the parent’s job to disciple their children and teach them to follow Christ.
Besides, the church only gets about 4 hours a week with your children to teach them about Christ.
The world gets roughly 35+ hours a week with your child (especially if they attend public school).
And parents of school-age children, on average, spend roughly 56 hours a week with their kids.
As you can see your child spends most of their time with their parents and with worldly influences.
You have the most impact on your child’s life and how they will view Christ and value their spiritual walk with him.
Myth #5- Family Bible Studies Have to Be Long.
Personally, I would like to love to have a 30-minute Bible study with my kids every day.
For most kids sitting still for that long is almost impossible. Especially, for an energetic 2-year-old.
If you can manage to get a 5-minute devotional done with your family every day or every other day, then you’re doing good.
Sometimes the shortest and simplest lessons or discussions have the most impact.
Myth #6- Family Devotional Time Has to Be Perfect For it to be Effective.
Remember that ideal scene I described in the beginning?
Yea…most family devotional times are not like that. At least they’re not in my house.
I have kids between the ages of 2-9 and it never fails that I have to interrupt the devotional to tell someone to stop touching someone.
Or run my 2-year-old to the bathroom in the middle of the story.
Then there are days that they are really engaged and well behaved and everything goes smoothly.
Even if you’re dealing with moody teenagers and it feels like nothing is getting through, keep pressing on.
You are making an impact. You might not see until years later, but it will all be worth it.
The enemy would love for you to get discouraged and give up.
Don’t let him win!
Myth #7 – Family Devotionals Have to Be Done A Specific Way
There is not a right or wrong way to do a family bible study.
It’s tempting to try and imitate what we see on Pinterest or what other parents are doing.
But you have to do what works for you and your family.
One family might choose to read a passage of scripture after dinner and discuss it together at the dinner table every evening.
Another family might read a simple devotional book with 3 questions at the end during breakfast once a week.
The family two blocks away may have a bible verse that they memorize every week and they discuss the verse each day.
None of these ways are wrong.
Why Studying the Bible As a Family Is Important
Having a daily or weekly family devotion has the following benefits:
- brings your family together regularly
- allows your children to grow in their faith
- it causes parents to draw closer to God and to their children
- it reinforces what they are being taught in church
- it can provide opportunities for families to live out their faith in their communities through acts of service.
I think that every parent would agree that they want their family to be drawn closer together as a family and for each member to grow in their relationship with Christ.
With the current climate and crisis being caused by the global pandemic we as Christian parents can no longer rely on the church to teach our children about Christ.
Many churches have already closed their doors and they may remain closed for weeks to come.
While most churches are streaming the adult services to their members what about services for the children?
Now, more than ever it is time for us as Christian parents to step up and commit to teaching our children about our faith and what it means to be a follower of Christ.
Have any of these beliefs prevented you from creating a shared bible study time with your kids?
Let me know in the comments section.
As always keeps Christ in the center of everything you do.
Your Sister In Christ,
Stay tuned for my next post on how to create a simple family devotional routine.