Create a Faith-Shaping Environment for Your Kids

An Atmosphere of Faith


Whether you call them family devotions, or faith talks, or family worship, the renewed emphasis of discipleship in the home calls parents to intentional discipleship of their children. But we live busy lives. Sometimes circumstances prohibit well-intentioned families from gathering together for dedicated times in Scripture and prayer. Does that make you a bad parent? Are you then failing to fulfill your calling to bring your child up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord? Larry Fowler is an author and Executive Director for Global Training for Awana. In the first video, he shares what he views as the most important thing parents do to disciple their kids, giving encouragement to parents who may feel overwhelmed at the task. 


Larry spoke about his own experience having great intentions about setting apart a time for family devotions, but how circumstances often interfered with their execution. Can you relate to that scenario? Is there anything in particular that usually keeps you from intentional times of family devotions? If so, what? How do you typically respond when your plans to have a time of family devotion fail?
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Working from Deuteronomy 6:7, Larry encouraged a climate of spiritual conversation in the home and with children. Think about the conversations you have at home. In what ways are they different than the conversations other, non-Christian families on your street have?
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In what ways can the manner you speak with your kids grow more seasoned with Scripture? How can you let every conversation you have with your child flow out of your relationship with the Lord?
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What specifically is the Lord doing in your life that you can share with your family today? What would you hope to be the fruit of that conversation?
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Scripture is full of references about our hearts. It is in the heart that our true desires, motives, and pleasures live. This is true for our children as well. In this next video, Larry lays out two ways that parents can reach the heart of their child, positively impacting how their faith is shaped.


Larry made clear early in the video that whether they try to or not, parents impact the heart of their children. How has your heart been shaped by your parents, whether positively or negatively? How do you think the way your parents shaped your heart impact the way you relate to your children?
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Larry noted that it is not necessarily what your children hear but what your children see that most impacts their heart. What opportunities do your kids have to see your faith? Where do you struggle to let your kids see your faith (such as struggle with sin, doubt, etc.)? How might their own faith benefit from seeing your struggles?
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Larry explained the impact of emotions that come from a parent toward a child. Are you more likely to show positive, encouraging emotion or negative emotion to your child? How can you seek to be sensitive to the influence you have, intentionally showing excitement about your relationship with the Lord?
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Whether through the words that you speak, the way you model your faith, or the emotions you display, being intentional about the atmosphere you create in  your home can have a tremendous impact on your child's faith. As a parent, God has given you the incredible opportunity and responsibility to live out your faith in front of your children. As important as intentional times of teaching and family devotions are, the atmosphere you create by the way you live is just as vital in showing that faith isn't just an activity you do, but a part of your life.