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These three little words, when put together, suddenly become a huge to-do with rules and perfectionism attached.
I once thought Family Worship Time looked a certain way. I even went so far as to line all my children up in chairs in front of me. I gave them Bibles and hymnals to juggle and required they sit there, moving very little, and speaking even less.
It didn’t go well.
Yet, I held on to an ideal. I was just sure Family Worship Time was nothing less than Daddy reading Scripture, Mommy leading songs, children chiming in with brilliant, spiritually sound comments on it all. Everything we did seemed to fall miserably short.
Thankfully, God showed me I needed to separate those three little words and take them for what they truly meant and not force them into some unattainable expectation I had created.
Family = Whoever is present in the home at the time
Daddy works some rather odd hours, so he’s not always here when everyone is awake. Sometimes, one of the children is visiting Grandma. Often, baby is sleeping. We also have lots of guests in our home. Any one of these could cause me to think Family Worship Time can’t be had, but with that kind of thinking, we’d never connect as a family on a spiritual level.
So, rather than get caught up in needing to have the perfect family situation to have the perfect family worship time accept that family worship time is simply a consistent part of your everyday routine no matter who is there.
*Choose a time of day when most everyone in the family is in the home. This may be at the breakfast table, right before dinner, or shortly before bedtime.
*Even when you have guests in your home, keep the consistency of family worship time. You are ministering and blessing your guests, and teaching your children the importance of worshipping God!
Worship = A focus on God’s Word
If the central focus of your family worship time is God’s Word, then you are doing this thing right! Read Scripture, discuss it, sing songs together, and work on Scripture memory. It doesn’t have to be difficult – it just has to be steeped in God’s Word.
When we worship as a family, we are turning the hearts and minds of our entire family toward Christ. We are thanking Him for His sacrifice for us, praising Him for His love for us, and reveling in the blessings we receive because of Him. It’s a time of reflection and intercession for others, as well as a time for us to recognize that we are covered in the grace and mercy of an Almighty God!
When we focus on Christ, we cannot possibly focus on ourselves! There’s no “right way” to worship as long as Scripture is our central focus.
*Family Worship Time should be like a buffet – something for everyone. If you only have little ones, don’t hesitate to add in some stuff that is over their heads (you can always try to explain big concepts in a simplified way, but it’s ok if they don’t always “get it.”)
*If you have a mix of bigs and littles, include songs that appeal to the littles, let them play “instruments” (think pots and pans and jingle bells!), and even give them a coloring page with a Bible verse on it to display on the wall for the week!
*Consider buying hymnals from eBay or Amazon to use in your home! You can also use YouTube to find songs with lyrics for you to follow along – this is especially helpful if your family isn’t particularly musical
*Get everyone the same translation of the Bible so they can follow along. As soon as our kids are reading well, we buy them a Bible!
Time = Whenever and wherever it works!
It isn’t a requirement that you have Family Worship Time around the breakfast table or in a straight line of folding chairs before bed. Family Worship Time has to fit YOUR family.
Perhaps one morning, Daddy is home a little longer than usual and calls everyone in to hear what he is reading in his Bible that morning. Perhaps Daddy is working late, and Mommy gathers the children around her at the piano to sing songs to pass the time. Maybe Family Worship Time tends to naturally happen during the school day or while everyone is cleaning up after supper. It doesn’t have to be the same time and the same place every single day to be worshipful!
The only caution I have when it comes to timing is that if you struggle with consistency, you should probably try to come up with a time of day that usually works and stick with it for a while until it becomes habit.
*Set a reminder on your phone and gather everyone to whatever room works best for the family, and make it happen!
*Keep family worship time short if you have small children.
*Don’t skip family worship time if one or two members of the family are not present. It needs to be an important part of your family, and not something that is optional or only happens when it fits neatly into your schedule.
Ultimately, we have to stop making Family Worship Time a huge burden full of things we have to do in order for it to be perfect. Break it down into its individual components and realize that where two or three are gathered, Christ is there. You don’t need to be perfect because He already is!
Click below to get your FREE Family Worship Guide & get started with a simple Family Worship Time for every age and stage in your family!
Family Worship Resources:
*Raising Arrows FREE Family Worship Guide
*Family Shepherds by Voddie Baucham
*Seeds Family Worship – Upbeat Scripture songs – available in mp3, CD, streaming included with an Amazon Prime membership!
*Scripture Lullabies – Calming lovely songs – available in CD.
Family Worship 101 from Ligonier Ministries