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Creative Ideas for Family Worship

By Dr. Don Dunlap
Pastoral Counselor
All out of ideas for creative family devotion times? Read on for some helpful suggestions.

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If you’re thinking that you have to invest hours of planning in your family devotion times, think again! Faithful, consistent efforts get the job done, no matter how simple the plan. In the 8th article of a 20-part series, Dr. Dunlap suggests several helpful ideas that can be easily implemented, such as Bible flash-stories, character qualities, catechism, notes of encouragement and gratitude journals.

Many parents feel discouraged and embarrassed by the fact that they have repeatedly begun a family devotional plan, only to find that it seems to fall apart within a few weeks. One of the major obstacles to maintaining a consistent family worship time is that parents often attempt a plan that is too complicated and too time-consuming. We now continue a list of suggested activities for family devotions that are simple and meaningful.

Help your family develop an “attitude of gratitude.”

Begin a family journal of thankfulness and write in it from time to time. Developing a grateful spirit in our children is of primary importance. Occasionally take a few minutes during family devotions to write a family thank-you note to someone who has done a kind deed for your family.

Don’t fail to teach your children godly character.

Take a few minutes during family worship each week to discuss a particular character quality from Scripture. The last three articles in this series list 49 character qualities taken from God’s Word. Talk about the definition of the quality you have chosen to work on and brainstorm as a family about ways to demonstrate this character quality throughout the week. Also explain what happens to relationships when people fail to demonstrate this particular quality. Post the “Character Quality of the Week” on index cards in strategic places around your home and in your car. Praise family members who exemplify the character quality during the week.

Be certain that your children know what they believe. Obtain a booklet of catechism questions and make a copy for each family member. Familiarize your sons and daughters with great doctrinal truths by reading a few questions aloud during family devotions and ask them to read the answers in unison. You will be amazed at how quickly they begin to memorize the questions and the answers.

Remember that your teaching methods do not have to be fancy or complicated.

Your family will appreciate your efforts.

During one family devotion time each week, you may want to discuss the sermon that was preached the past Sunday. Ask if anyone remembers what the pastor’s topic was and then take turns thinking of ways to practically apply the truths that were taught.

Read interesting and pertinent articles from Christian magazines. Or, after reading a few Bible verses aloud, use the “scripture” portion of family devotions to have family members sign a greeting card of encouragement for a missionary, or a sick or grieving friend. The possibilities are limitless. Remember that when you lead them lovingly and by faith, the simplest family worship activity will bless your family and cause them to grow spiritually.

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