Family discipleship can be challenging any time of year but can be extra challenging during the busy summer months. Let’s look at some ways we can enjoy the summer while still growing in our faith.
In our family, we did not have a formal family worship time. My husband worked shift work or long hours, so we followed the Deuteronomy 6:4-7 model to disciple as we went through life together. Our children grew up going to church, listening to Christian radio, seeing mom and dad study and teach, discussing spiritual things at dinnertime, and growing as a family in our faith.
As summer approaches, you will have an opportunity to change your schedule and how you “do” discipleship in your family. Here are a few recommendations:
Family Discipleship Goal:
Talk about it and choose together what you want to study this summer. Choose something in which each family member can grow in their faith. Our family loves to teach, so we would choose a topic of study. However, if you are a family who loves music you may study the origin of the great hymns of the faith, or look at the lives of modern artists and pray for them as they tour this summer.
Keep it simple. Study a short book of the Bible, a specific person, or a topic. Summer is a great time for a more in-depth study on a personal level while allowing the family time to center around discussion regarding what each person is discovering.
Write it down. It is more likely that you will achieve your family discipleship goals if it is written down and posted where the whole family can see it.
As You Go:
Take time to stop and look at creation. As you go, ask your children what evidence they see of a Creator or the Flood. Time is never lost when we take time to observe creation and thank the Lord for the little things He has created.
Take time to pray with your children, and not only before meals and at bedtime. Since we live in Wyoming, we spend a lot of time driving. When we drive into town, go to church, or begin a trip, we pray as a family. Even now, as we talk or text each other, we often ask, “How can I be praying for you?” But don’t stop there; be sure to discuss answered prayer, especially if you have younger children. All of us need to be reminded that God not only hears but answers our prayers.
Be deliberate about choosing events and trips that include aspects to help you and your children grow spiritually. While on vacation or over the summer months, choose a different kind of church to attend. Get to know believers in other denominations and allow your children to see different aspects of the body of Christ. Our children have attended conventions, workshops, and training with us. When they were teens we encouraged them to pursue training and opportunities to learn and serve.
When our children were teens, we saved together as a family and went to Israel. It was a deliberate decision on the part of my husband and I to give our children roots. Part of our plan was to teach them and then take them to see the land. To this day, our children point to that trip as one of the most influential events in their lives. That trip forever changed all of us and deepened our faith. Not every family can do that but look for those things you can do this summer to give your children roots in the faith.
As the summer approaches, ask the Lord how you can improve your family discipleship Deuteronomy 6:4-7. We have several studies, flash cards and timelines to help you, visit our website to see all we have for your family.