Discipling Kids in the Daily Rhythms of Life

by Feb 17, 2022Parenthood

In Matthew 28:18-20, Jesus gives these final words to his disciples, 

“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations… teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

You might be wondering why I would start an article about family discipleship with this passage. Isn’t that a passage about missions? Yes, but it is so much more. Jesus’ command to make disciples doesn’t just apply to people we meet through our life or the unreached people groups of the world. It applies to those closest to us, especially our children! Jesus commands all of his followers to make disciples, and as parents, he gives us the perfect opportunity to obey that commandment.

As parents, you have been chosen by God to be the spiritual leaders of your home. You are uniquely designed for the job of discipling your kids. And the best news is, you don’t have to, nor should you, do it alone. Our role at Providence Kids is to come alongside you as you lead and disciple your kids in the daily rhythms of life. No family rhythm is exactly alike, but there are some basic truths we want to remind every parent who desires to take Jesus’ command to make disciples seriously in their home.

Start with your own relationship with God.

If you seek God for yourself and allow him to be Lord of your life, your kids will see what is most important to you. Jesus modeled this for his disciples. He sought his Heavenly Father for wisdom and guidance, even as the Son of God. God is faithful to those who humble themselves and seek him. Pursuing your relationship with God above all other relationships will transform the way you parent your kids. 

Talk about your faith regularly.

In order to raise our kids with a Biblical worldview, a view of the world and life that places God at the center, we have to talk about God and his word in every context of life (Deut 6:7). There should never be a separation of only talking about God in certain settings, such as at church or around other Christians. Our kids need to hear us talk about what the Bible says in every facet of life. They need to know how the gospel transforms every part of our life. 

Set aside specific time to engage in family worship.

Kids thrive in structure, routine and consistency. When you make reading God’s word and talking to God a part of your daily rhythm, you are setting it in their mind that this is important. Every family rhythm looks a little different, but making time for family devotion can be done. If you are struggling to add this in, I challenge you to pray and ask God to show you what is taking up your time that needs to change. 

At Providence, we care so much about this that we provide resources to help you each week through our Providence App. One of those resources is the Family Devotional. We use the Sing, Read, Pray model to keep it simple and easy to reproduce. Here is how you can use this model to structure your family devotion:

Sing a worship song that helps focus your heart and mind on God. We love using songs that sing scripture! This helps them write God’s word on their heart by making scripture memorization easier.

Read God’s word. In the Family Devotional, we usually take the lessons your kids are learning on Sunday morning and provide guidance for you to read the scriptures that connect to it. This is just one way to get into God’s word together. Other ideas are to read through a book of the Bible. Psalms is a wonderful way to teach our kids to praise and lament! Or choose the book we are reading through as a church, such as Luke. Second Timothy 3: 15-17 tells us, “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching. Every part of God’s word is profitable and as your kids grow, it is important to show them how to read all of it. 

If you have young kids, find a good Children’s Bible such as Crossway’s ESV Children’s Bible that offers visuals to draw their attention in. Or consider using The Jesus Storybook Bible which is a beautiful way to show how every story in the Bible points to Jesus. After you read scripture, discuss it with your children. You could use these general questions for any scripture:

  • What does this teach me about God or the gospel?
  • What does this teach me about myself?
  • What is one thing I can do to apply what I have learned this week?
  • Who can I tell about what I have learned that needs to hear this story?

Pray to end your family time. Teach your kids to pray. We want them to know when and how to pray; always and in accordance with God’s word. Pray scripture back to God, praise him in prayer and pray for others. In the Prayer section of the Family Devotional, once a week we will provide the church-wide prayer prompts to encourage you to teach your kids to pray for others, even people they don’t know. 

Another resource we offer to help encourage you and your kids to read God’s word is the Kids Bible Study. This resource is available online or in a printed form and is written with your older elementary kids in mind. We want to make it as easy and fruitful as possible! Romans for Kids Part 1 and Part 2 are available now!

Remember, you are making disciples by creating a rhythm of putting God at the center of your life. There will be interruptions and chaos at times. There will be days that you don’t know how to answer their questions and days when you just have to stop everything and pray for forgiveness because you let the frustrations of the moment get to you. The heart behind discipleship is more important than forcing it to look a certain way. Delight in the Lord together in the real, ever-changing rhythms of life.

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