7 Simple Steps for How to Lead Family Devotions

*Adapted from John Snyder’s Facebook post on 3/19. Used with permission.*

  1. Open your Bible.
  • If your children are old enough, have them open their Bible with you.
  • Remind them of these basic truths often: There is a God in heaven. He is living. He speaks to us today through His living Word.
  1. Pray.
  • Use Scriptural truth in your prayers to God.
  • Example: “Lord thank you for giving us this great treasure, Your written Word. Thank you that Your Word is living and powerful. Thank you that Your Word is perfect and true. As we open Your word, open our eyes to behold wonderful things!”
  1. Read.
  • Read a verse or a few verses. You can even work through whole books of the Bible with the goal that each Book would become familiar to them over time.
  • Example: “Ok so today we are continuing our study of this great book of Proverbs. And today is the 19th so let’s read Proverbs chapter 19 and then talk about a few key verses.”
  1. Ask Questions. Let them answer.
  • Even very small children (like age 3) can benefit from you asking them questions.
  • Example: “So let’s look at Proverbs 19:2, just the first line: ‘It is not good for a soul to be without knowledge.’Question: Is it good for us to be without knowledge? Yes or no?”
  1. Reward right answers.
  • Sample Conversation:
    • “That’s Right! Very good, son! You are correct! (Give a Big hug! NO social distancing with your own children. Much less with your spouse! ) That’s right!
    • The truth is: It is NOT GOOD for us to be without knowledge. That is why it is so important that you learn how to read and read well! And that is why we read the Bible and other good books.
    • God does NOT want us to be ignorant, or without knowledge. He wants us to be learners throughout our lives. The best knowledge is found right here in the Bible!
    • Okay now let’s look at the next line. Proverbs 19:2: ‘And he sins who hastens with his feet.’
    • Wow! What does that mean? Well let’s talk about what it means to be hasty. Or to ‘hasten with your feet.’
    • Is this talking about walking fast? Like is it a sin to walk really quickly? No! That’s silly. So, listen!
    • To be hasty means to make decisions quickly, before having enough knowledge to make a wise decision.
    • Like when people panic. They become very afraid, and they start acting hastily. They do things out of fear, without praying or thinking or gathering knowledge first.
    • God does not want us to be like that. God wants us to get knowledge first and make decisions carefully.
    • So how do we do that? Let’s say we are thinking about a big decision. What should we do first?
    • Right Sweetheart! We should pray first. Then what? Very good! We should consider God’s Word. What does He say? And we should go forward carefully, seeking to honor God.”
  • You get the idea. Make it interesting. Keep it brief. And be consistent.
  • Doesn’t seem like much? Consider the cumulative effect! 15minutes/day, x 5 days a week, x 52 weeks/year, x 15 years (from age 3 to 18) = tons of good, eternal truth instilled!
  • Plus, we were constantly teaching Biblical truth as new situations would arise, as our family faced new circumstances.
  1. Sum up.
  • Once you’ve gone through a few questions, sum up the key truths that you learned.
  • Example:
    • “Okay so in today’s lesson, we learned this”
    • First, It is not good for a soul to be without knowledge. God wants us get knowledge. One application of that is you need to learn to read well and listen well.
    • Second, he who hastens with his feet sins. Anyone who makes decisions hastily or very quickly without getting knowledge first, is making a big mistake.
    • We’ll learn a lot more about making decisions as we continue to study this great book of Proverbs. Let’s pray!
  1. Pray in light of what you learned.
  • Maybe even sing a song in light of what you learned.
  • Okay guys, let’s sing “Thank You Lord” and then let’s pray.
  • “Dear God, thank you for teaching us today. Help us to be wise.
    Give us Your knowledge as we continue to read and study Your Word.
    Help us not to be hasty or to panic, but to be careful.
    For Your glory, for our own good, and for the good of other people.
    We love you Lord! Thank you for loving us first!
    In Jesus name, Amen.”

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