February 20, 2009
My family does not spend enough time together. When we do spend time together on a devotional or prayer it is great. Online is difficult and more like broadcasting. It is very asynchronous and it is difficult to have close relationships. It is also a difference in generations. People in generation Y are digital natives, they grew up in the midst of the Internet and use it like we used letters and books. The times are changing. Will we change with them?
I grew up in a home where family worship was on its way out around the time of my birth. It was not until I started going to a great church that truly focused on family and spending time growing together in the Lord that I learned of the need for family worship. Too often the churches that I attended stressed the importance of youth groups and small groups over the importance of family worship. As a former youth pastor myself I know that the first and most essential need is family worship. Youth groups are great and helpful, but they should never fill the place of family worship.
For most of my life there was no family prayer, neither in my home as a child nor in my home as an adult. Those things changed not to long ago and now there is prayer in our home and in the homes of my children. We pray for many things as we all should and I thank God everyday for all the wonderful things he does without ever expecting anything back. I try to live my life like that in giving of myself, my life experiences and knowledge to others without getting anything back. After all if you pray together you stay together in the love of our one and only true Father. In God's Grace John
Often times I would share devotionals with my children (I am a widower) before they left the house each morning. I did it in hopes tthat they would carry it throughout their day. Times changed, attitudes changed, schedules changed and so did devotional time. My 17 year old daughter is completely disinterested, my 25 year old daughter believes but does not pray or read and will only go to church if I go. My 12 year old son, whom for a time I read devotionals to him at bedtime, has only a sporadic interest. I read my bible and devotionals several times a day. I am a 44yo online student (Junior) at Liberty University seeking a B.S. in Religion and another in Psychology w/ Christian Counseling Specialization. I say this because I try to set an example for my family but they don't seem interested in God right now. I know they believe in the God of Abraham and Jesus Christ, yet they do not want to spend anytime with him. I don't want to cram Jesus down their throats but am at a lost. I guess that was the extent of my corporate prayer outside of church. I believe that it is rare for families to share devotional not to mention much of any other time. It seems everyone is into their own thing, while living in the same house. Devotions still "work" for me, however, it is disappointing when you read one that you know you have to share or you will bust but no one is there mentally.
Both personal and group devotions are important. the good thing about paper devotionals is that you can turn away from the distractions waiting for you on the computer (email, surfing, news) and be still before God. Online devotions are convenient and can be shared between individuals (easily sent by email) ,but yes, we lose that face time. But, God is sovereign, and as we keep praying for God to reach those we share with, we should also keep our eyes open to the real live people we have around us.
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