Last week, my husband was attempting to say something profound and it went like this,"do you ever feel........" he took too long. Waited a beat past what he should have as he gathered his thoughts. My pre-teen daughter very quickly chimed in "like you're a plastic bag" referencing the popular Katy Perry song. The family erupted into laughter. Well, most of the family. My husband had been ready to give some sort of deep thought that was interrupted, yet again by one of the kids. He was less than thrilled.
Let's keep it real here. I wish I could say that each night at 7:45 we settle into a beautiful time of family worship that is oh so memorable. The reality is that the interruptions are prevalent. They happen on nearly a nightly basis. Someone passes gas, gets off on a rabbit trail, "accidently" pushes or pinches someone else, or has to choose that part of the day to tell about a vivid dream they had
the night before.
As parents, we're tempted to feel like these devotion times are a waste. It seems that nothing is really getting through. We wonder if even a tiny grain of what we'd hoped to instill got in those crazy brains of theirs. We're tempted to give up and say it's not worth it. It's in those times we focus upon the bigger picture...the bigger reality.
1) We are establishing life-long habits. Most people don't do regular devotions because they've never established a routine of it. Even in the craziness of life and the interruptions that happen on a nightly basis, we are helping our kids to establish a daily routine of spending time in God's Word.
2) We are demonstrating leadership. Who doesn't like to have an audience that seems completely spell bound and in awe of what we are saying? It's not gonna happen when our kids are concerned. But, we're doing what God has called us to do (see Deuteronomy 6). He called us to lead, we will obey and trust Him to take care of the details.
3) We are familiarizing kids with the Word. Each time we crack open the Word and talk about a particular verse, we are planting seeds that will reap eternal rewards.
Stay the course, parents. Take heart. Gas will be passed, siblings will squabble, or babies will be cute. Remember that this is a marathon, not a sprint. We're in it for the long haul. What matters is we do it. Don't let the interruptions deter you. Stay focused.
How about you? Do you find that your kids have trouble focusing during your family's devotion time? What do you do to help them stay focused? What do you do to remind yourself that these distractions are part of it?