Christian Parenting and Family Resources with Biblical Principles

10 Great Reasons to Have Consistent Family Devotionals

  • Karen Whiting Crosswalk.com Contributing Writer
  • 2019 23 Sep
10 Great Reasons to Have Consistent Family Devotionals

My husband yelled from the bathroom for help. Our children rushed to the door and asked what he needed.

He yelled that he could not get the door open and it wasn’t locked. They pushed and without success. James snuck away and went outside to the bathroom door that opened to the patio. He had picked up the key on route and unlocked it. He laughed when he saw his dad pulling the door closed so that no one could open it.

That activity led to a devotion on prayer and how we ask for help but pull against God’s answers. Everyone remembered we need to yield to God in prayer. Exciting family devotions bring many benefits and build great memories.

Discover how time sharing faith and prayer together can impact everyone in the family.

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  • 1. Devotionals Give Faith Priority

    1. Devotionals Give Faith Priority

    When we make time to share our faith as a family that shows our children the importance of connecting to God. It also gives us time to process our lives and understand how God uses us. Faith becomes more real and valued by children when we do faith together.

    Set one devotion time every few weeks to review lives and how God has answered prayers. Praise God for the answers and trust the unanswered prayers to Him. Discuss how a lesson may have made a difference in how you treated people or handled a problem. Record the prayers and answers. That reinforces how to live our faith.

    It also puts God first in our lives when we focus on His Word. Be ready for unexpected benefits of devotions too.

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  • 1. Devotionals Give Faith Priority

    2. Devotionals Builds Bible Literacy

    Bible literacy is not knowing the most Bible trivia. It’s understanding the body of knowledge and message contained in the Bible. As children become familiar with the Bible, they will build their knowledge of God’s Word.

    Chart what Bible passages you read to show how much of the Bible is studied in a few years. As your children read and connect the concepts and message of the Bible, they will see God’s full story from Genesis to Revelation.

    Help children connect the books of the Bible through sharing how a story or book fits into the Bible and the timeline of history. Many Bibles show times lines in charts and maps to make this easy. Children will discover the truth of 2 Timothy 3:16 that all scripture is useful as they gain an understanding of the real message God wants us to learn from scriptures.

    They will value beliefs important to God as they learn how different concepts fit with God’s message.

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  • 1. Devotionals Give Faith Priority

    3. Devotionals Share Core Beliefs

    Reading scriptures and learning from them provides a biblical perspective on life. As we read passages that reflect our core beliefs, the truths that matter most, we have the opportunity to share with our children why those beliefs matter.

    Emphasize core beliefs when you read one. If you read about the two greatest commandments, pause and share why those are such core beliefs of the Christian faith. Talk about why we should put God first and how to love others. Discuss how you can live out the beliefs or how loving others also reflects the importance of respect for life and respect in simple things like listening and talking to other people.

    As you nurture core beliefs you also share how to relate to others in a healthy way.

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  • 1. Devotionals Give Faith Priority

    4. Devotionals Build Bonds without Rivalry

    Family devotions are not competitions, so that means time together without struggles and trying to win. When you include asking about praises and prayer requests and then pray for one another it encourages empathy and caring. In applying what you read, you’ll be working on loving and serving one another.

    When our children each needed to pray for one person’s biggest need and thank God for their latest blessing, they started to care more about how God worked in his or her life. With reading the Bible and discussing how people in the stories related and how God worked in their lives you will also discover better ways to interact.

    Use the time to share a childhood or recent story that reflects the lesson’s message. Stories connect us and some make us laugh to add to building strong family ties. Investing time to talk and be together makes a difference.

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  • 1. Devotionals Give Faith Priority

    5. Devotionals Communication Skills

    When you gather to read the Bible and do some related fun activity, you communicate about different topics. You talk and it’s not simply telling a child what chore to do or asking how the day went. As you read a story or passage, it’s less stressful to discuss someone else’s problems objectively.

    You can also look at things creatively and find the humor, beauty, or wisdom in the passage and share how the message can impact your family.

    Nurture communication by modeling respect and active listening. Use some Bible situations to discuss similar conflict resolution. Look for patterns of how Jesus related to different people. Make sure everyone has opportunity to talk and praise the quieter family members when they pen up. Involving everyone in the devotion time shows that each person is valued and that faith matters.

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  • 1. Devotionals Give Faith Priority

    6. Devotionals Develop Cognitive Skills

    I quickly realized that reading the Bible included helping our children understand the vocabulary and reviewing what happened in the passage. That strengthened cognitive reading skills. It also helped our children listen better. 

    Use simple techniques to increase thinking and learning skills. Ask who remembers what you did and read the last time you met to promote good memory and retention skills. Restate the reading that contained new vocabulary words in simpler terms or define them.

    Help children figure out meanings from the context of a passage (context clues) by asking what is happened and what the word may mean. Praise children who pay attention, answer questions, or sum up the lesson as that builds attention skills. Dig deeper to foster analytical skills.

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  • 1. Devotionals Give Faith Priority

    7. Devotionals Critical Thinking and Analytical Skills

    Critical thinking is the ability to evaluate information to draw reasonable and objective conclusions. To analyze is to examine the facts to understand the meaning. These skills develop as children learn to see differences and similarities, question facts, and make decisions based on the evidence.

    Foster such thinking by asking questions that make children connect ideas or what they can learn from the facts. Ask children to think about a question before answering to let them analyze the information. For example, if you read about Jesus healing a deaf person and you’ve studied other miracles of Jesus, ask who else Jesus healed and what was the same or different about this healing.

    You might want to compare two healings. You can also ask how they can apply what they read to praying for healing. This also helps them look beyond the passage to the whole message of the Bible.

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  • 1. Devotionals Give Faith Priority

    8. Devotionals Develop Interpersonal Skills

    Interpersonal skills are the social abilities to work and interact with other people.

    With devotions, you develop skills needed to get along that include communication and listening abilities. You learn to understand other people and develop empathy. You also have the opportunity to discuss different opinions with respect and apply problem solving skills as you read and discuss how biblical situations and solutions can be applied in daily life.

    Extend the learning with hands on activities. After reading the Good Samaritan you can teach children basic first aid or get the whole family involved in a project to help the homeless. Increase teamwork by cooperating in projects and doing service together.

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  • 1. Devotionals Give Faith Priority

    9. Devotionals Help Children Become Service Minded

    As children discover how Jesus and people in the Bible helped one another they will think more about helping others. As they apply lessons by choosing to be kind, courteous, and helpful they will become more other focused.

    Various passages can help them notice people in need such as realizing that Jesus felt compassion for a hungry crowd and fed them. Use such passages to encourage them to notice needs of people and listen for opportunities to serve.

    Once children start serving others it will become a more natural response. When we model service, our children will follow the example.

    One of my cousins who shows great hospitality passed on that heart for welcoming people to her daughter. I arrived early one day, and her five-year-old daughter answered the door. She asked me how my trip went, showed me to a place to sit and offered to get me a drink and snack. Once she cared for me, she sat and conversed until her mother arrived.

    Not surprising, that cousin and her husband spend time sharing faith with their children. She’s a great mom.

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  • 1. Devotionals Give Faith Priority

    10. Devotionals Develop Parental Roles

    In leading devotions, you will also develop your parenting skills. You increase positive interactions be gathering your children and leading them in devotions. You will be modeling how to live your faith, establishing another routine, and working n time management to do devotions regularly.

    You’ll be nurturing your child’s learning and faith as spiritual leaders in the home. It’s also an opportunity to authentic and admit shortcomings and times it’s been hard to live your faith.

    More important, you’ll be loving on your children as you share faith, pray together, and praise them for how they apply the Bible. You’ll be developing long lasting bonds and building a stronger family.

    Continue or start doing family devotions no matter the age of your children. Buy a good resource or open the Bible and start reading and chatting. Mix in hands on fun and be enthusiastic. If you are new to reading the Bible admit that and let your children know it’s a new adventure for everyone. It will always be time well spent even when you think it is chaotic and not working.


    Karen Whiting (www.karenwhiting.com) is a mother of five and a grandmother. She is the author of twenty-six books including 52 Weekly Devotions for Families Called to Serve and 52 Weekly Devotions for Busy Families. Karen has a heart to help families thrive and grow in faith.

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