When our oldest was little and we just had one child, family worship came easy. We were diligent. We had her memorizing the shorter catechism, the apostles creed, and read Bible stories to her. When our second was born, we focused more on the Bible stories for them both and some catechism. We now have our third who is currently a year and a half old.
However, at this point, we now face a dilemma during family worship. The oldest, now 6, wants more depth to the Bible reading and the middle, now 3, wants the kids books that the oldest is tired of reading. How I can keep it on his level and at the same time give her a thoughtful lesson without “dumbing it down.” In either scenario, one will be at a disadvantage.
As I was pondering this the other day, I realized that the problem with our family worship is that it had actually turned into “storytime.” Here is a Bible story…voila….lets pray. I have, on trying to make it beneficial for both, lost touch of the fact that we are missing actual worship as a family. See, the oldest reads the Bible each day to start her homeschool routine. She gets the depth she desires. And the middle is read a Bible story at bedtime on his level.
They are both getting Bible knowledge, but neither are learning to worship. Neither are seeing the example of mom and dad in joyful worship, talking about God’s goodness, singing, etc. Of course, we want our kids to know God’s Word. We want to catechize them. Yet, we should remember to teach them to worship and praise this God who brings the dead to life; who made his Son become sin on our behalf, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.
So, there is a renewed effort to make this time a time of worship. Let’s sing. Lets pray. Lets read the Bible. Lets talk about God’s goodness in our lives. Lets talk about his provisions and his lessons. Let our kids see the real joy Christ brings in these moments. Lets worship Him.
It is more than just storytime.
The Jews did not spare any cost in their idolatrous worship. No, they ‘cause their sons and daughters to pass through the fire to Molech’ (Jer. 32:35). They were so zealous in their idol worship that they would sacrifice their sons and daughters to their false gods. How far the purblind heathen went in their false zeal! When the tribunes of Rome complained that they wanted gold in their treasuries to offer to Apollo, the Roman matrons plucked off their chains of gold and rings and bracelets and gave them to the priests to offer up sacrifice. Were these so zealous in their sinful worship, and will you not be zealous in the worship of the true God? (Thomas Watson)