So, a reader recently reached out and said she’s very eager to add more ..well, Jesus into your her family’s day. Couldn’t we all use a little more Jesus in our days? I thought this would be a really fun blog post, and I loved the idea of answering her question (to the best of my ability!) here on the blog this morning. Please know, I’m not a great theologian. I am someone who grew up with very unhealthy theology as a child, someone who had to build a relationship with Jesus built heavily on forgiveness and grace. One thing that is so important to me is raising my boys to love the Lord in their actions and model Christian behavior for their peers. I pray they grow up and have a joyful relationship with the Lord. I am going to share ways we implement bible time and model Jesus love for us here, and I’d love to hear your tips in the comments!
Pray together as a family- This one is important, free, wonderful. We pray together before every meal and before bedtime. Sometimes, when things are going awry in our family we will pray for guidance or patience. I really want my kids to learn to reach out to Jesus and ask for his support. There is something immediately peaceful about sharing your heart with the Lord.
Age Appropriate Bible Stories- There is a bible out there for every age! I read a women’s devotional bible every morning. I really like this one, because I don’t need multiple books and the devotional is built in right into the word. It also recognizes women have 1, 5, 10 minutes only some days so it offers a break down of 1, 5, and 10 minutes scripture lessons. Liam’s bible is the Adventure Bible For Early Readers and Sawyer’s bible is the Jesus Story Book Bible. These are both filled with gospel truths but broken down into age appropriate stories of courage and heroism. They aren’t very long so perfect for bedtime and a few minutes identifying the main themes from the story.
Attend Church- Church shopping can be intimidating, I totally get it! However, I want you to TRUST me when I say, it is worth it! I urge you to ask your entire family “what are we looking for? what are our priorities for a church. Attend some that you know align great with the mission, but also consider some you haven’t heard a lot about or a new church. When you find a place you love, make Sunday (or whatever day you attend church!) Make church day a fun and special opportunity to be together, make a special lunch or order take out. Make a nonnegotiable part of your family’s week.
Plug in to smaller fellowship opportunities- Join a small group or attend a bible study for mothers. Sign up for a married life class, etc. Look for groups you identify with and connect with them!
Sign your kids up for a fun little program called Awana- We are Catholic, so our church actually doesn’t offer this. You can head over to the Awana website and find out which location is closest to you. It typically happens on Wednesday nights from about 6-8 pm (depending on your church) and its usually begins at 3 for kiddos. If you don’t have one near you, you can buy the resources online and work through the curriculum at home by purchasing the book on their website! (The soundtracks are also available on Amazon Prime Music!)
Incorporate some scripture into your home decor: I’m not saying you need to glue the New Testament to your wall in lieu of wallpaper, but consider using some free printable scriptures in your home. (or adding a weekly verse to your family’s letter board) just surrounding yourself in positive messages from the bible can be really, really great for the whole family. (My grandmother always left a verse in our bathroom so I could memorize it when I went to the bathroom.)
Good music and television: Ya’ll I love my gangsta rap! So, this one is hard for me. BUT.. I check out good cds for my car from the library and tons of Veggietales for the boys! Check to see if your church a subscription for members like Right Now Media or Formed!
Attend social functions at your church: Attend coffee and donuts, a potluck, or whatever else your church is hosting. This is an excellent opportunity to support your church mission and plug into the church community.
Attend Bible School: Well, maybe not you, but send your kids! My boys love going to bible school and I’m so glad this year Sawyer will be old enough to attend the one at our church. I love when churches give kids the tools to find church a fun and safe place to be!
Volunteer for things: Most churches have ministries for just about everything. Look at your schedule, your family’s schedule, and see how much you can realistically contribute and find a group that you can plug into during those times. As an example, I took on the role of providing snack and/or craft for our Sunday School. This was my first year having both kids in the program, so I didn’t feel a calling to teach but a calling to sit and actually listen during mass for the first time five years. Our church also has a meals ministry, which has worked nicely for our schedule as I can double a recipe I’m already making for my family and deliver it church when they need it.
Spend time in prayer as a family, loving each other and those around you well.