Sep 30, 2013

31 Days of Family Devotions

 As I thought about this year's 31 days of writing in October and the subsequent NaNoWriMo in November, I prayed and considered what God would have me write.

He answered.  {I love it when He does that}.

Last year I was inspired by personal growth and my unofficial theme word for last year - Beautiful.  Again, this year's theme word {Abide} came to mind after I heard {loud and clear} my inspiration for this year's project.

These 31 days of Family Devotions will be a part of a book that will be written next month, and I continue to prayerfully consider where I will go {with the book} after that.  I am sharing these with you, hoping that you feel inspired to begin to include a devotion as a part of your family tradition {my husband and I have just started, and we hope to continue}.

Why Family Devotions?
Because it's encouraged by scripture:
"And you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands that I am giving you today. Repeat them again and again to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. Duet. 6:6-9
In those moments when you are faced with challenges above what you believe you can cope with, the promises of God found in the Bible can offer direction when you feel lost, hope when you feel hopeless, peace when your world is crumbling and a defense when you feel attacked. 

Knowing Bible verses isn't enough, we need to know what to do with them. In Matthew 4:1-11, Christ was led out into the desert and tempted.  Each time He was tempted, He had a promise that He took out of scripture that gave him a foundation to resist.

Isn't that what we want for ourselves?  Isn't that what we want for our children?  If we are talking with our children about the promises we cling to in the Bible, we are also strengthening our foundation in Christ.  We are giving our children {and ourselves} valuable tools that will help us weather the storms of life successfully.

What to do with these Devotions
Each one of these verses is the foundation for a full week's focus.  You can rush through them, but I believe your family will truly "hide" these promises in their hearts {ala Psalm 119:11} if they have a week to ruminate {think: cow chewing cud} on the memory verse and have a daily conversation about the concept.

{That means that at the end of this month, you will have access to half a year's worth of devotions!}

Even if you don't actually practice and discuss every day, make sure the verse is posted in a prominent location.  There is no hard and fast rule that you have to discuss it daily.  You can discuss it every other day, or twice during the week. Each day is designed to take 5-15 minutes.  The more you discuss it, the more likely it will stick, but if you are new to family devotional time, once a week during or just after dinner should be enough.

Each Devotion will be broken down like this:
Day 1: Read memory verse, write it out {or print the free printable} and post it where you can see it.  SAY it. REPEAT it. PRACTICE it. {I will write out a little thought for you to think about for the week, you don't need to read this out loud, or you can}
Day 2: Take turns saying the memory verse, either from memory or reading it from the paper.  
Discuss daily question.
Day 3: Take turns saying the memory verse, either from memory or reading it from the paper.  
Discuss daily question.
Day 4: Take turns saying the memory verse {from memory}. Discuss daily question.
Day 5: Take turns saying the memory verse {from memory}. Discuss daily question.
Day 6: Take turns saying the memory verse {from memory}. Discuss daily question.

I hope you come back and take a peek at what I'm working on! Praying Blessings on you and your family during this month and the rest of the year.
Please leave comments and let me know what works for your family if you successfully do family devos!

"But as for me and my family, we will serve the Lord." Joshua 24:15b

For the full index {of all topics and scriptures} go here.
Click on the buttons below to open all four memory verses in each theme.

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  1. A.J. I love devotion with family! I will be using these for sure! thanks!

  2. This is a wonderful idea, A.J. I will go through this with my children as well.

  3. Thank you! I am really excited about what God is going to do through this!


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