This article is a great reminder of the importance of encouraging kids to read the Bible and pray — even when it seems like it doesn’t make a difference. This ParentLife article by Debbie Dickerson shares five ways to maximize the use of devotionals by the kids we serve. Also, here are some excellent Kids Devotionals you’ll want to check out.
I caught my son reading the Bible and spending time with God. Alone. Mid morning. Without being told. All his life, I had prayed that he would hunger for God wholeheartedly. Why did I unexpectedly find him seeking God now? I wonder how many times and how many ways I had encouraged him to read his Bible and have a quiet time with God. Then suddenly, it happened. Well, it shouldn’t have been unexpected and it really wasn’t sudden. Years of repetitious reminders and encouragement to spend time with God came from his family, Sunday School teachers, children’s minister, and pastor.
Don’t think that every time you tell the kids you teach, “Be sure to read your Bible and talk with God,” that you are wasting your time. Say it, time and time again. Find different ways to remind and encourage them. Here are 5 ways to use the kids devotionals to help your kids develop that hunger for God.
1. Take a pic.
My children’s minister says the kids devotionals are best tools to mentor children, but they have to make it past the floor of the mini-van. Get the devotionals inside the home by taking a photo of the kids in your group and attaching it to the front of each devotional. Kids love seeing pictures of themselves and parents value anything that has their kid’s photo on it. As you send them home, say, “Be sure to read your Bible and talk with God.”
2. Hide a note.
Peak the kids’ curiosity to look inside the devotionals by writing a personal note to each kid somewhere in his devotional. As he leaves your room, hand him his devotional and encourage him to look for the hidden note. Remind the kids, “Be sure to read your Bible and talk with God.”
3. Choose a day.
As part of your prayer time with the group, hand out the devotionals. Instruct each child to write the names of people in the group, friends, and family members on as many days as they can. Encourage the kids to take their devotionals home and remember to pray for the people they listed on the days they chose. As you tell kids goodbye, say, “Be sure to read your Bible and talk with God.”
4. Spread the Word.
Equip kids to be intentional about telling others about Jesus. Suggest they cut out some of their favorite verses, devotionals, facts, jokes, or games and leave them where a friend will find them. Remember to say, “Be sure to read your Bible and talk with God.”
5. Make a scrapbook.
Help kids develop a sense of missions. Each month, read the missions emphasis. Keep a scrapbook in the room and add the mission story each month. Don’t forget to say, “Be sure to read your Bible and talk with God.”
One day not so suddenly, expect to catch the kids reading the Bible and talking with God.
Debbie Dickerson is the production editor for More, Adventure, and Bible Express and a mom to two boys.
Use Lifeway Kids Devotionals with purpose and intention and watch how doing a devotion on a regular basis can actually lead to being devoted to Jesus.