Summertime Devos Made Easy
I have been praying that God’s word would be real to my children, and that they would have a desire for it and understand that it is so much more than a book. I want them to have an authentic experience with the Word. I know that starts with me being in the word, but they see me doing that. They have reached an age where they need to start exploring the Word and not just family devotionals and cool kid centered books. They need God’s word itself.
One thing they have proven over and over, they aren’t too young to understand serious theology. In fact, they are much purer in faith than me, so if I can couple that with God’s word in their life, I am setting them up for growth.
I’d love to start a devotional that will be insightful for every single day of the summer. But I know we will fall short, and that will leave me feeling unaccomplished. That wouldn’t be the truth, but it’s still how I would be left feeling, and I would hustle and try to hurry through to get it done instead of worrying about what actually impacted my children’s hearts.
At my house, we are starting simply. We are going to meditate and hopefully memorize one verse a week of the summer. I figured that if I created this, then you don't have to and you can use that time to actually be with your kids! So I am sharing it!
It’s ten weeks which gives you a little elbow room. There are several activities that go with a verse to memorize each week. You can take what you want and leave what you don’t. You can use this resource however your little heart wants to. One year we ordered our verses from a company called Armed With Truth. They make temporary scripture tattoos! It was awesome. Make this work for your family how you want.
For us, it works to spend time reading it in different translations and sitting in it every day. It’s pretty casual. We ask the questions, we glean insight from my five-year-old that we never saw coming, and it becomes a part of our family life.
The biggest thing that impacts my kids is their journaling of this verse. They write the verse in their journal, and then they use it to write a prayer. Writing it out themselves is a step I wouldn’t skip because it really helps them own it. Praying it gives the verse a whole new dimension for them because it let the verse walk right into their lives. That scripture embedded in their hearts and implanted will produce the fruit that I could never make happen.
Some ages will need more help than others, like I said, make this your own. Figure out how it works for your family. You can write the verse in their journal on Monday, pray it on Tuesday, answer questions on Wednesday, illustrate it on Thursday, and play a memory game with it on Friday. When my kids were too young to write, I printed the verse out for them and they glued it in their journals and colored it. These are just a suggestions, the only rule is to not hold this rigidly. I repeat: make it work for your family!
At our house, we print out each week of questions for my kids to answer and they have fun illustrating the verse some way, painting it, using one of the color sheets from Pinterest, making it out of Legos, and we always write it on our big chalkboard so that it’s in front of us all week. If you don’t have a chalkboard display the kids verses on the refrigerator. My older kids like to display theirs on the bathroom mirrors so they can read and work on memorizing the verses while they brush their teeth. There are tons of ways you can tweak these ideas.
During the week, my kids will also:
Find the verse themselves in their own Bible and highlight or color it.
Write the verse in their journal (this can be a really cool step for artistic children, let them illustrate the verse as well.) If your kids don’t have a journal, use one of the thousand spiral notebooks left over from school and let them decorate the cover.
Read the verses in context, sometimes even the whole chapter (Having the kids read to each other out loud promotes more discussion. This is even a great step to do over a couple of weeknight dinners.)
Here is a sample week to check out:
Week # 6
“Do nothing out of rivalry or conceit, but in humility consider others as more important than yourselves. Everyone should look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interest of others.” Conversation Starters:
What does rivalry mean?
What does conceit mean?
What about humility?
How can I help others?
How can I remember to think about others instead of just myself?
What is something I can do for someone else today?
As a follow up read Philippians 2:1-4 in the Message translation.
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