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ABCís of creating personal worship experiences for children

Marietta church staff member offers suggestions for improved childrenís ministry

 

Proverbs 22:6 says, ďTrain up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it.Ē

The art of a daily quiet time is a vital tool to prepare our children for a lifetime of worship. Time with the Lord is essential for an abundant life with Christ because these times allow children to develop a friendship with Jesus and grow more like Him.

Devotional times teach meditation, allow for time to listen and talk to God, and encourage the claiming of His precious promises. As children read Godís Words, they are guided to seek His way, become more like Him, and be shaped into His likeness as they seek the Lord.

Children get to know Jesus as their special friend when they spend time in praise, thanksgiving and confession of sins. A quiet time is an encounter with God by having a personal worship service. The worship allows for transformation and helps the children to be filled up with God for the day.

At times, it is hard to think of concrete ways to experience a devotional time. Here are 26 ways to help children experience God.

 

Articulate Godís promises. The verbalization of scripture promises out loud will strengthen your faith.

Buy or make Bible bookmarks to remind you of important passages. Design a bookmark using craft products to take you back to a meaningful Bible verse.

Craft a prayer bracelet. Use different beads to remind you to pray for specific people or things each time you see the jewelry.

Dedicate a specific area to use for your devotional spot. Go to the same location each day to talk to God. Make the area special by decorating it with candles, crosses, or artwork.

Examine books that have spiritual messages. Some good books include: Does God Know How to Tie Shoes? by Nancy White Carlstrom, published by William B. Eerdmans; I Wanted to Know All about God by Virginia L. Kroll, published by William B. Eerdmans; Old Turtle by Douglas Wood, published by Pfeifer-Hamilton Publishers; and The Runaway Bunny by Margaret Wise Brown, published by Harper Trophy.

Find God in nature and have a devotional outside. Discover a secret garden or a meaningful prayer spot where Godís handiwork reminds you of His greatness.

Gather reminders of God. An eraser reminds that God removes or erases sin and offers forgiveness.

Handpick friends to send prayer notes of encouragement. Design your own stationery.

Include instruments in praise to God. Psalm 150 lists several instruments used to praise God: trumpet, harp, tambourine, strings, flute, and cymbals. Select some praise music on a CD/cassette, and grab an instrument and play along with the musicians.

Journal thoughts that God has shared through His Word. Youíll enjoy looking back on His special Words to you.

Kneel in adoration as you lift up needs and thanks to God. Philippians 2:10 declares that all will bow before Jesus, proclaiming His glory.

Lift hands in praise to God as you talk with Him. In Psalm 134:2, believers are encouraged to raise their hands in praise.

Meditate on names of God. Think about names that begin with each letter of the alphabet. Praise Him for being a great big God.

Notate answered prayers. Write the date that God provided for your needs and the needs of others.

Open the hymnal and sing or read a great hymn of the faith. Hymns provide a wonderful testimony of Godís faithfulness.

Pray scripture aloud. Open up the Psalms and pray in agreement with the Psalm writer.

Quiet times of meaningful prerecorded music can be played to aid in focusing on the Father.

Read through the entire Bible. Tyndale publishes the One Year Bible for Kids.

Sign a prayer. The Joy of Signing, published by Gospel Publishing, is an excellent resource to help with sign language. When you sign, you can actually feel what you articulate to God.

Thank God for a hundred blessings!

Underline meaningful Bible passages. This act will allow you to go back and remember Words that God has spoken.

Vocalize a prayer by singing a praise chorus to God.

Write a letter to God. Tell Him your dreams and desires.

EXcel in scripture memory. Try to memorize a scripture each week so that the Lord can help you recall His Words in times of trouble or need.

Yield to silence and listen to God. As you tune out distractions, focus on Him and Him alone.

Zone in on scripture by using different translations and paraphrases. Read the same passage in various Bibles.

 

Use one or more of these ideas to create variety in your childís quiet time, and as they grow up they will continue in praise and worship of the Father.

 

In addition to her staff position at Johnson Ferry Baptist Church, Pamela Clampitt Vandewalker is author of more than a dozen books, including her newest: 5 Minute Interactive Worship Devotions for Kids, available through Vision Publications at 1.800.862.5264 or www.visionpublications.net

This article is copyrighted and is used by permission of the writer.