Wednesday, 24 April 2013

Family Devotions

Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another.
Hebrews 10:25

Dennis Rainey
Dennis Rainey sends out a blog entitled “Moments with You.”  I found the following offering both humorous and sad.

Ever witnessed anything like this at your house before? After falling under deep conviction during the pastor's sermon entitled "The Family Altar Will Save Your Family," Dad cranks up his courage and announces, "Tonight after dinner, we will have family devotions." Later, after finishing his spaghetti, he pushes his plate aside, reaches for the 10-pound family Bible and says, "Everyone please sit up straight and listen carefully. It's time for family worship."

Casting a pleading glance at Mom, he asks, "Honey, would you start us out with a praise chorus?" After a weak song attempt -- during which seven-year-old Tom blurts out, "This noise is making my head hurt!" -- Dad is already sitting upright and is uptight.

"Okay, now let's read some Scripture. What better place to start than the first three chapters of Genesis?" He then proceeds to read the lengthy selection.

"Does anyone have a comment?" Dad asks. A long silence follows. Tom sticks his face in his water glass and tries to drink through his nose, causing Chrissy, age five, to giggle. "Stop it, you two!" Mom exclaims. "Can't you see Daddy is being spiritual?"

"Dad, I've got a lot of homework," says Chuck, the family teenager. "Can we wrap this up?"

"Well, what about Genesis, everybody? Come on. Any comments?" Dad asks, his voice rising. Feeling desperate, he looks at Mom. She quickly averts her eyes. Finally, Chuck lobs in a conversation starter: "What do you think God was doing before the Bible began?"

"I have no earthly idea," Dad says. "Let's pray."

It is sad because I’m afraid it is all too accurate.  Most of us men were not fortunate to grow up in a household where we witnessed dad leading an effective devotional time, so most of us have no clue how to do it.  Secondly most men do not like to do something they do not do well, compounded by the fact that many women can do it well.  Men are to be the leader, protector providers for their family.  The definition of the leader pictured in the Bible is both a spiritual leader and a servant leader.

Here is a suggestion.  Marty Machowski has written two excellent devotional books.  One is entitled Long Story Short covering the Old Testament and the other is entitled Old Story New covering the New Testament.  Each lesson is designed to span one week and each lesson is comprised of five 10 minute daily chunks. 

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