Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Growing Hearts: Mealtime Bible Devotions

One of my greatest privileges as a mother is to open up, teach from, and reverence God's Word with my children. What riches God's Word has to offer us all! Absolute truth, genuine comfort, chastening conviction, flawless guidance....it's all right there.

Our family has been working on mealtime devotions. We've found that consistently having dinner as a family every night when my husband walks in the door is such a blessing. It's an even larger blessing when we commit ourselves to open up the Word of God together at this time. We've used various books to guide our devotions at times. Recently, I stumbled upon a gem at a used book sale. I found this:

Principles Under Scrutiny: A Scriptural Approach to Personal Finances by Larry Burkett, c 1985.

The picture and title drew me to this book. Seeing the family with the open Bible and then reading the bold words above it, I just knew this was a must read. As my concern for the direction our nation is heading grows daily, I want to waste no time helping our family to be grounded in the Scriptures in all areas of life. Learning as much as we can about how to steward all that God has entrusted to us monetarily or otherwise in a way that is pleasing to Him is especially important to my husband and I. We want to pass on these principles to our children with the hopes that they'll do the same.

Once I noted the author, it solidified my decision to purchase this book. I remember listening to Larry Burkett's radio show, "Money Matters", before he passed away a decade ago. I so appreciated his love for the Lord Jesus Christ and his love of helping others to learn what God's Word teaches about finances. Just from the testimony I heard on the radio of his devotion to God and His Word, I have a great deal of respect for him.

While I wasn't sure if this book would be material that would be fitting quite yet for our three young children, it only took a couple of suppers to realize this is just right. Mr. Burkett presents the information so clearly that the concept he is trying to teach becomes quite easy to understand. He uses many wonderful illustrations to reinforce the concept he is teaching, but, best of all, he references lots and lots of Scripture. Our children have asked some good questions as a result of listening to these teachings, and it has been a blessing to our family to explain and talk through the reasons for why we make the decisions we do regarding certain aspects of finances, giving, saving, and more. But beyond the financial lesson being taught, the spiritual truth being conveyed is an even larger blessing. Mr. Burkett certainly was gifted in using such a practical area of life to draw one's attention to his/her heart on the matter and what God teaches about what he/she ought to do or think about first.

I'm not certain that this book was meant to be a "devotional guide", but we've found it to work just as that. If I counted correctly, there are 60 devotionals included in this book. Each devotional is the front and back of a page. There are seven categories: (1) Attitude, (2) Church & Sharing, (3) Insurance & Investing, (4) Borrowing & Lending, (5) Business, (6) Family, and (7) Ministries & Scriptural Highlights. While we've only made it part way through the devotionals on "Attitude", each one has been excellent thus far. A couple of my favorites so far are "Being Content" and "Suffering for Christ vs. Living Like a King". I don't know if each one will capture the attention and interest of our children, but I have no doubt the Lord will guide us and help us to use this book to navigate the Scriptures on the topics being discussed.

Lastly, since the book was published in 1985, I find it fascinating to learn of the principles Mr. Burkett emphasized in the book that were under scrutiny at that time. It's probably no surprise that those same principles are still absolutely under scrutiny today, only amplified now many fold, which reaffirms my desire to pass on these important teachings to our children all the more.

Whether it be Larry Burkett's book or another as a supplement to our mealtime devotion or simply the Bible alone, it is my prayer that my husband and I will be consistent with opening the Word of God at the dinner hour and at any hour together as a family. Growing in understanding and appreciation of God's Word together ~ I can't think of a better investment than that!

Do you have mealtime Bible devotions? What devotional resources have you found beneficial for your family?

"I have rejoiced in the way of thy testimonies, as much as in all riches. I will meditate in thy precepts, and have respect unto thy ways." ~Psalm 119:14-15

1 comment:

Tracey said...

Thank you for sharing this resource; I'm going to look into getting it for our family.

We do have mealtime devotions. They're similar to yours, in that we do it as a family right after we finish supper. We are currently completing a series that has taken us through the stories of the Bible. We read a passage, answer questions about it, practice a memory verse, and end with prayer.

This is a special time for us and I trust that it will build memories for our girls as well as help them grown in their knowledge of God and in their walk with Him.

Have a wonderful day, my friend!