How to Make Worship Part of Your Routine
We live in a society that puts many demands on people. There are extracurricular activities to schedule, doctor’s appointments to deal with and homework to complete. When the weekend comes, you may wonder how you’ll have the energy to even attend church, much less work your faith into the other six days. The good news is that it can be done, and it’s actually quite easy.
Put It on the Schedule
You hate to miss doctor’s appointments, and you know that your son cannot miss too many football practices. These events get plugged into the calendar and are only missed if absolutely necessary. Why don’t you put the same importance on church? It’s the only way you’ll make time in this busy world, and church truly deserves a higher level of commitment than extracurricular activities.
The Importance of the Evening Meal
Families that eat together, stay together. Sharing a meal has been an integral part of the Christian faith since Jesus shared his Last Supper with his disciples. Make the time to sit down as a family several times a week, and incorporate religious teachings during the meal. It doesn’t even need to be a lecture. There are far better and very positive ways to work your faith into the meal.
- Start with a prayer, and let the kids take turns saying the prayer. It doesn’t have to be a set prayer, and you will be amazed at the marvelous prayers children will come up with when given the chance.
- Take turns being thankful. Go around the table with each person saying what they are thankful for. You’ll have a chance to set the example when it’s your turn to list your blessings. This not only keeps the entire family focused on gifts from God, but it also boosts self-esteem and can help with behavior problems among the children.
- Practice the prayers of your religion. Whether it’s the Lord’s Prayer, a beloved psalm or the Hail Mary, this is a great time to work on specific prayers. Simply saying a different prayer together every night will help the entire family learn these relaxing words and remind all of you that Christ is always with you.
- Share a miracle that you witnessed. We fall into the habit of thinking miracles are huge, but they are usually quite small. Teach your family to look for the little miracles like a blossom opening up on the tree outside or a rainbow. Share the experiences over dinner to nourish your souls and remind yourselves that God is watching over us.
Say Evening Prayers
Children sleep better when they have a reliable bedtime routine. Rather than simply reading a book, add a prayer after the story. The ability to pray is important, and it is best learned at home. You can also talk with your children about things you have prayed for in your life, and whether or not your prayers were answered.
Praying or Preaching?
This is a secular world, and it’s become a normal part of our lives to hear people take the Lord’s name in vain. It’s so prevalent that your child will hear it on TV, at school and even on the radio. Most of the time, people don’t mean any harm by it, but it’s still a bad habit. If you are concerned about your family’s penchant for using these colorful expressions, you can start resetting the habit with this simple question.
The next time your child, or spouse, slips up and uses the Lord’s name in an inappropriate manner, look at them and say, “praying or preaching?” It’s a gentle and effective way to remind those we care about to take care with His name, and it also serves as a steady reminder that religion is important in our lives.