We have some strong faith that runs through our house. We believe God is in control of all things. We believe when bad things happen, God is still in control. We believe we are always going to be ok, no matter how bad the storm, simply because we are God’s children!
We try to pray often and are constantly reminding our kids to always go to Christ, for everything!!!
“Seek the Lord and his strength; seek his presence continually!” 1 Chronicles 16:11
When I left my parents home at age 20, I did not have a habit or routine in place of reading the Bible. I was raised with a solid Christian background, but I just didn’t have a Bible reading routine.
As an adult I have learned just how important it is to consistently read the Bible. I feel so much closer to God and my faith is stronger when I am in a season of reading. As my children grow up and leave my home, I will not be there to tell them every single day to have faith, that God loves them, and He is in control.
My kids need that routine of reading their Bible to be reminded of God's presence. My babies are 16 and 12 and I am running out time!
“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” Psalm 119:105
Here’s a few things I have tried in our home, and they seem to be working!
TACTIC 1 - I can tell my kids every day that they need to read their Bible, but that doesn’t always mean they will. I do know that even when we think kids are not listening or paying attention, they are. They see our habits (good and bad) and they are learning.
I find that reading my Bible early in the morning before anyone is up works best for me. The only problem with this is that the kids don’t “see” me reading my Bible. So sometimes, I open my Bible in the evening, or maybe have it in my lap when I am sitting on the couch before bedtime.
TACTIC 2 - A few years ago, I bought each of my children a new Bible. Their Bibles were in their respective rooms for a while, but somehow ended up on the bookshelf in our living room. I realized this and moved the Bibles back to their desks/tables in their rooms. In Tyler’s (16 years old) room I placed his Bible on top of the clutter of stuff on the table.
About once a week I would ask, “Did you read your Bible today?” He would reply “no,” and I would say, “ok.” Then as the days went on and clutter was piled on top of the Bible, I would pull it out and place it back on top of everything. Things like the Xbox controller, stuff out of his pockets, random pencils, gum, sunglasses, etc. His Bible just kept working its way to the top of the pile by mom.
One evening, I was talking to Tyler, and he mentioned he had a rough morning. He said nothing was going right when he woke up. He felt defeated before the day had even started. But, he saw his Bible sitting on his table. He said, “Mom, I remember you telling me that sometimes you just open the Bible to a random verse and so I did. I was running late for school, but I went ahead and just randomly picked a scripture.” Let me tell you, our God is so good! In that moment, God gave Tyler a scripture that pertained to exactly how he was feeling that morning! Tyler said, “It was exactly what I needed to hear that morning.”
A few weeks later Tyler tells me he had started reading his Bible each evening before going to bed. Thank you, Jesus!
TACTIC 3 - The last tactic I am going to share involves texting the kids. I was feeling guilty on a Sunday morning that we had missed church, again, and knew my kids needed to hear some good news besides my constant preaching. I pulled up Google, searched for a Bible study or message for teens, found a video about 15 minutes long, and texted the link to the kids. (I watched the video first.) Both kids were sleeping when I sent the message, but I listed multiple scriptures from the teaching in my text and asked them to look up the scriptures in their Bibles. I also gave them a few questions to ponder and think about regarding the video.
My sweet Olivia (12 years old), who typically enjoys school type work, watched the video first thing when she woke and quickly found me to discuss the questions and show me the scriptures in her Bible. Tyler, who tolerates school because he wants to play football, watched the video before he went to bed that night. They both heard about Jesus that day and both used their Bible to reference scriptures.
There are many creative ways we parents can set examples and persuade our kids to read the Bible. Our Bible reading routine may never be perfect, but we can always keep trying to be better. I am thankful for this season and the new habits we are building. I pray our kids know where to get answers every day to life’s big problems. Life is hard, but with Christ, life is possible.
Tell me, what other ways can we show our kids the path to reading the Bible?