On my bookshelf as a child stood a collection of “Bible story” books. Regularly our dad would open a volume from this collection and read stories of Daniel in the Lion’s Den, Noah in the Ark, and more. The colorful photos are still etched in my memory, but more importantly, are the recall moments of elevating the story of redemption in our home.
Fast forward to Hilary and I navigating the waters of parenthood. Man, it sure is difficult. We proudly assumed the role of disciple-maker and began in their infancy the habit of reading Scripture and praying together each night. Have we missed nights? Yes. Have we parented perfectly? No. In fact, in no way am I saying, “Hey, look at us”. In fact, we have failed in many ways as parents. Also, to be fully transparent, we have tapered off the rigidity of our nightly family worship as our kids have aged and we have empowered them to more assume responsibility for their faith development.
That being said, as I coach and counsel parents in the assumption of their God-given role as disciple-makers there is one habit I recommend. If you do nothing else, begin the daily habit of family worship. If it is simply reading the verse of the day generated from a website and praying together, this daily habit will become a catalyst for conversation.
I cannot tell you the number of deep discussions we have engaged in as a family that had nothing to do with the Scripture we read. But, the opening of God’s Word released Spirit-filled discussions that have been both healthy and uncomfortable as we unpack culture.
This is not a new revelation. As we read Exodus 13, God instructs the people of Israel to intentionally transfer their faith from generation to generation. While historically this has become a focus on traditions being transferred, from its inception it has been more to do with pointing to the person of God and His sovereign provision.
Encounters with God as a family usher in moments to tell the story of redemption, accounts of deliverance, and hopeful freedom. As a parent, you do not have to have every answer. Rather than elevating yourself as a superhero who can fix anything, position yourself as a servant of God who models what it looks like to live in dependency on the Lord for life and breath. This does not require a Bible degree but instead a willing and humble heart.
I’d love to hear your family worship stories or am willing to help you get started. Don’t hesitate to reach out.