Have you been a part of a small group? What was your favorite part? Most likely it was the way you grew closer to those in the group as you opened up during discussion time about things in God’s word and things close to your heart.
We led a small group in our home for 3 years that ended a year ago. I was very sad on the last evening as the small group came to an end. God had new things in the plans for Keith and I and so we felt the need to move on. But I had grown very attached to the group. I prayed for them regularly, thought of them often and enjoyed the close, safe friendships that I had with them. Over the course of 2-3 hours during our meeting times the conversations usually went deeper and deeper and deeper. Rarely in life do we discuss the deeper things of God – it takes time to get there. So I valued this small group like none other.
In the past year, I have seen a small group blossom in my little family of four. While the kids have been young I have looked at devotional time as Keith and I being the teachers and the kids being the students. But as the kids have begun to want to discuss some of the deeper things in God’s word, I see a turn in our times together from being a teaching atmosphere to more of a small group discussion atmosphere and I LOVE it!
Daily I read out of the NIV Bible during breakfast to the children. Because of my husband’s work schedule it is difficult to have family devotions daily – so weekly is what we currently do. I blogged about our summer family devotions on the 10 commandments here.
I always imagined that devotional time as a family would be magical – that is not the case. It is hard work and it takes some planning to make it a meaningful time and discussion – but what we gain from our “small group” time together is priceless!
If your family does not already meet together at least once a week to read the Bible, I want to encourage you to start a devotional time now. Approach your husband to see what he thinks. If he is like my husband he will want your help. Be your husband’s helper and take the initiative to chose a book or a study that your family would enjoy. Then help your husband by getting the children together and ready to meet. If you have little ones who won’t make it through the time quietly, prepare them with crayons and paper or another book they can look at. My children have journals that they draw pictures in of what we are reading and discussing. Allow your husband to lead and make it your duty to keep the children quiet so your family can experience a meaningful time of meeting with God and each other.
I have discovered a powerful tool for memorizing verses and it’s called Seeds Family Worship. This company makes CD’s with verses set to modern music that the entire family can enjoy – while memorizing scripture. Check out this video below with one of their songs from their CD’s. I can guarantee you if you listen to the song the entire way through you will have Psalm 55:22 memorized. Give it a try! I highly recommend you purchase one of their CD’s even if you don’t have small children – purchase it for yourself!
Feel free to share in the comments section what you have done in the past for family devotions – I have a lot to learn in this area and would love to hear from you on this subject!