How To Homeschool My Child

Should You Have Family Devotions With Your Kids?

In our family, laying a Biblical foundation was key as we decided how to homeschool our children. Steve & I knew that a homeschool from a Christian perspective was imperative to bring our children up with Christian values.

Why?

One of our overall goals is that our kids would be Christians, walking with God that could think both Biblically and critically.

How do you raise kids to think Biblically & critically?

We used breakfast as a time for family devotions. This was the perfect time for us to have devotions with kids & develop critical, Biblical thinking.  Breakfast may not be your time period, but that’s what we did. Let me back up a bit.

There was a time period when Steve did not think family devotions were as important as me. We both tell this story when we talk at home scFamily Devotions car radiohool conferences. I “nagged” him about leading family devotions.  That is, until I heard James Dobson talk on Focus on the Family on the radio.

I can still remember the street I was driving down when I heard it. It’s about 6 blocks from the house, and I was by myself in the car. Dobson said, “If there’s something that you wished your husband would do, pray for him.”  I was immediately convicted to change my tune, so I started praying.

I learned very quickly that God’s work doesn’t happen instantly. It’s not instant pudding, instant oatmeal, or microwave this. And Steve didn’t change in a week or a month or even a year.

It was several years before he saw the importance of family devotions. And now he teaches the importance of family devotions when he works with dads.

During the time I was praying for Steve to lead family devotions. The kids and I would have our devotions after Steve left for work. I didn’t do it in his face or nag him anymore. I didn’t make a big deal out of it, even though I thought it was important.

Although I used a variety of resources during this time of leading family devotions with our kids. one of my favorites was Our Family 24 Ways, by Wholeheart Ministries.

When Steve started leading devotions, we continued to have them during breakfast. He decided to tie something I’m not used to doing (family devotions) to a daily habit.  One of our habits is to eat breakfast every day. If we have devotTraining Hearts Teaching Mindsions every day during breakfast time, then we know that we’re getting it done. Besides, Steve finishes eating quicker than any of us and has plenty of time to lead devotions while we finish our breakfast.

Steve began with Teaching Hearts, Training Minds. We also read through books of the Bible.  During these family devotions we asked LOTS of questions which led our kids to critical & Biblical thinking.  Family devotions should include questions so your kids begin to think for themselves.

If family devotions is new to your family, find a habit that you do every day.  Start having devotions during that time.  Breakfast worked for our family, but you need to choose the best time for your family.  Make it a daily habit.

How to Homeschool My Child

WhMaking Biblical Decisions Stephen Beck Ranger Pressen do you have family devotions?
What’s your favorite family devotion resource?

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Copyright Kerry Beck, 2012
You have permission to reprint this article, as long as you don’t make any changes and include the bio below.

Kerry Beck encourages parents to homeschool with a Christian focus. You can get her free ebook, Everything You Want to Know About Homeschooling at http://www.HowToHomeschoolMyChild.com.

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28 Responses to Should You Have Family Devotions With Your Kids?

  1. I know I need to do this with my son. I’ve been lazy about finding the time to do it though. Thanks for the reminder. Breakfast time won’t work for us, but dinner might. Or even just that half hour before bed.

  2. We have used many resources in the past. My husband has done some family devotions, but most of the time it is from me. I like how you said tie family devotions together with a daily habit! Thanks!

  3. Jim says:

    I don’t have a favorite resource for family devotionals, but would welcome some suggestions.

    • Kerry Beck says:

      Jim,
      Obviously we used the Bible alot of time, but Steve’s favorite was Teaching Hearts, Training Minds. Easy to use with fantastic information.

  4. Karolyn says:

    We do devotional time at the beginning of our homeschooling day. We have used resources from Focus on the Family. Now we are working through What We Believe by John Hay and David Webb.

  5. Kelly says:

    My husband’s schedule is erratic, so there isn’t a set time for devotions, but we sure apply God’s word to each situation in which we think to!

  6. Karen says:

    We are using “Teaching Hearts, Training Minds”. It is very comprehensive catechism. You will have a very good foundation of apologetic.

  7. Judi P says:

    We do devotions after dinner and before bed. It includes prayer and a variety of resources. Our kids favorite is Keys for kids.

    • Kerry Beck says:

      I haven’t heard of Keys for Kids. Will have to check it out. When I was growing up, my dad read to us after dinner because that was the meal we all ate together.

  8. Kirsten says:

    I do it with my children at bedtime. Sometimes my husband joins in, but I don’t pester him about it, as much as I’d love to see him leading it. My kids are 3 & 4, so we are using the Jesus Storybook Bible right now & I just ask them a lot of questions about what we’ve read. Or they ask me questions since they love to stall bedtime as long as possible :). But my 4 yr old son especially has a lot of thoughts and questions that have led to great conversations.

    • Kerry Beck says:

      When our kids were that young, we read from our Bible Storybook before bed. Our favs at that age were: “The Bible in Pictures for Little Eyes” by Kenneth Taylor and “Big Thoughts for Little People” by Kenneth Taylor. My kids loved them and they were solid.

  9. Jen says:

    This is exactly what has been on my heart. I’m thinking either breakfast or dinner would be the best time for us to do this.

    • Kerry Beck says:

      When our kids were older and going to 8:00 classes, we moved our devotions to dinner. However, most of the growing up years was at breakfast.

  10. heidi says:

    I have always wanted to have family devotionals we just never put a plan together to do them. But it’s not too late.

  11. Alannah Michelle Linton says:

    We do not have a family devotion. I would like to have one, but don’t know what to do or where to start.

  12. Lucinda Strader says:

    I do devotions with my kids at the beginning of our school day. It has worked so far but we would like to find a time that works for my husband to lead them, he currently works from 6 am to 6 pm…and we haven’t figured anything out yet. thanks for the encouragement!

    • Kerry Beck says:

      Lucinda,
      Work schedules can put a strain on family devotions. When our kids were very young, we read at bedtime. Some of the other readers have devotions at bedtime, also.

  13. Elaine H says:

    We simply use the Bible when we do family devotions.

  14. RG says:

    This post is a huge blessing to me. I am where you were – the one concerned, but not nagging or in his face, and praying. Now the devotions are sparse and scattered, but they are there sometimes, which is more than what was happening, and so I rejoice in that. My man is so good at so many other things that I don’t complain. Thanks.

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