I have a family of six — me, my husband, our three kids and God. My husband and I are very intentional about making God a real, tangible member of our family. We don’t simply just talk about God, we demonstrate Him in relevant ways, so our kids can truly know Him and learn to do life with Him. Our two sons and daughter will learn about having a relationship with God by first watching their parents. We make Him real in our home.
How do we make God real in our home?
First, we talk about our experiences with Him. We describe what God is teaching us in the Bible. We share how God showed us something through nature. My husband and I are constantly sharing real ways God is speaking to us. We chat to each other in front of our kids, and we include them in our conversations.
Second, we pray aloud–a lot. At first praying in front of my children felt uncomfortable. But I knew if they didn’t learn it from me, who then would they learn from? So I began praying out loud when they were very young. I prayed for the people in the ambulance. I prayed for the tragedies on the news. I prayed for family and friends who were struggling. And I pray for them about every pain, worry, struggle and heartache they have. Plus, my husband and I pray for them at bedtime every night.
Third, we read Scripture every morning. We either read from the Bible or grab a devotional and read it while the kids eat breakfast. Right now we are reading my one-year devotional, Slay the Day, and the kids are hearing truth spoken over them. They hear God’s Words, and that makes Him more real.
Fourth, we confess our wrongs and apologize. There is no such thing as a perfect parent. The best we can be is flawed but perfected in grace. God can change a heart, but the heart must be willing. We demonstrate humility to our kids, so they can see God tangibly working in us. *Read more about confessing pride in my article, “Humiliated Adversaries.”
Fifth, we distinguish between God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit. The Trinity of God can be confusing, but I explain to my kids this simple analogy. I tell them that their father is 1) a dad, 2) a husband and 3) a doctor. He is the same person, but he relates to others in different ways, depending on what he’s doing. So the same goes with God. He is real and interacts with us in distinct ways. *Read more about the Trinity in my article, “My Triune.”
Sixth, we prompt our kids to ask God in prayer. Sometimes, my husband and I don’t have the answers. When our kids struggle, we pray with them. However, we always suggest that they pray to God for themselves. Listening to God is difficult at first, but like any relationship, intimacy takes effort and time. He will become more real in their lives as they learn to pray one-on-one with Him.
Seventh, we surround our kids by other people who love God. My husband and I attend church weekly. This ensures that our kids are influenced by other Christians. We want our kids to be involved in another ministry outside of the home. Church allows them to experience a tangible God from other perspectives. *Read more about the importance of going to church in my article, “Unwise tooth.”
These seven practices make room for God in our Home.
Making God real transforms us from a family of 5 to a family of 6 with God in the center. God becomes tangible because we invite Him to join us everyday. We teach our kids to rely on God when they are young, so God can be a real part of their lives as adults.
Questions: What does your family do to make God real in your home?
“Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it” (Proverbs 22.6 KJV).