Worshiping with Your Kids
Parents, we know that it can be a daunting task to have your kids in worship with you. This is true whether your child is transitioning into CFC Youth or a pandemic results in the closure of CFC Kids. But we think that this is a great opportunity for your kids to potentially learn how to participate in worship with us and even for you to grow in shepherding your family towards Christ. We hope the information below is helpful as you consider how best to set your children up for success in worship.
- Pray – This is the most important thing you do. It is God’s very Spirit that your child needs, not mere tips for success or even your good example. Pray throughout the week for your children to be given new life in Christ. And pray with your family on Sunday morning that the Lord would give you ears to hear and hearts to respond.
- Make Family Worship a Priority – Worship doesn’t begin on Sunday in the church building, but every night of the week around your dinner table (or wherever and whenever you worship together as a family). This is a great time to pick up a good habit, as it will have the added benefit of making hearing the Bible read, praying, and singing seem normal to your kids.
- Review the Songs We’ll Sing and the Sermon Text – Did you know that you can find our sermon text and songs for Sunday on our website? Head over to our website, and under the resources tab click “Preparing for Worship.” There you will find the sermon text and songs for this upcoming Sunday. Why not read the passage together one night at family worship, or help your kids learn some of the songs we will sing together? It can prepare your kids to listen and participate more fully.
- Be Prepared for Sunday Morning – Saturday night is actually pretty important too! Lay out clothes for your kids to wear, gather together anything you’ll want to take to church with you, and try to get to bed at a decent time. On Sunday morning, eat breakfast with your family and pray again for the service that morning. Set and talk about reasonable expectations for your kids as it relates to participation and behavior.
- Use the Restroom – Normally, I’d say just make sure that your kids use the restroom before the service when they get to church. In these strange times, let me encourage you to ask your children to use the restroom before you leave for church to minimize use of common touch points.
- Use Kid’s Notes or the Digital Liturgy – If your child is old enough to read and take notes, print out some kid’s notes during the week and look it over with them when you arrive at church, helping them know what they can or should take notes on. Even if they are not old enough to use kid’s notes or read, you can use the digital liturgy to talk to them about the order of the service and what is going on. Do this before service starts, and then feel free to quietly encourage them to listen and/or participate as appropriate.
- Model Participation – Kids are little sponges, soaking up both what we say and do. So give them all the good instruction (above) and a good example to follow. Sing loudly, say “Amen” with the prayers, take good notes (even encourage your kids who are learning to take notes on things they can write down), and fully engage as much as possible.
- Talk about the Service as a Family – Anything is open for discussion here! Talk about your favorite songs, the public prayers that gave voice to your own prayer, or points in the sermon that affected your head (what you think), heart (how you feel), or your hands (what you do). Let the Word of God echo throughout your household after the service as a normal course of action.
- Pray – If you skipped this earlier (or even if you didn’t), let me reiterate: This is the most important thing you do. Pray that the truths of God’s Word would grow your child’s love of Christ, that they might be our brothers and sisters, and that we might walk towards heaven together with them.
Let me leave you, brothers and sisters, with a few encouragements.
- Worshiping with your kids takes consistency. Like anything in life, doing it over and over again with loving, caring instruction will often yield fruit. Keep at it! It’s hard, yes, and in this season we realize that with some kids who are very young or especially active, it may not be feasible for your family to be in worship every week. But strive for growth in consistency, even if it is in their participation watching the live stream.
- Worshiping with your kids takes discipline. It takes discipline from you to set them up and help them. It takes discipline from your kids to grow in their ability to participate and pay attention. Often our kids will surprise us with how much they can take in or do. Don’t exasperate them, but don’t set the bar too low either.
- Worshiping with your kids takes grace. Yes, we want our kids to behave, to sit still, to listen well. And there is nothing wrong with encouraging and rewarding that. But in a desire for quiet, don’t fall prey to the opposite trap of provoking your children to anger (Ephesians 6:4). Give them grace in correction and training for righteousness. We all need it.
Brothers and sisters, we cannot tell you enough that we love you and your children. We are genuinely delighted to worship together again soon, Lord willing. If there is any way in which we can better serve or care for you and your family, please let us know at the contact information below.
Love in Christ,
More in The CFC Blog
July 6, 2020Planting Trees: Sowing Gospel Seeds in the Next Generation
July 3, 2020CFC Kids Summer Update
July 2, 2020CFC Worship Update