My daughter’s hands were folded tightly in her lap and her little eyes were squinched shut. Her sweet little lisping prayer finished our family worship for the evening. This was our family worship evening ritual for many years as our kids were growing up.
If you need some ideas to make your family worship meaningful with kids, you can start with these 7 simple Family Worship Ideas with Kids.
You may be wondering how to start having family worship with your kids or what to do for family worship. Planning family worship ideas for kids can seem overwhelming when you are starting out but keep reading for a few simple ideas.
As a parent, you are the most influential person in your young child’s life for several years. This is an awesome responsibility!
Family Worship Time Should be Age Appropriate
If you have very young children, family worship should be short and relatable to their little minds and hearts. Sings some action songs, read a story while you snuggle, and teach them to pray. If you have a toddler, your family worship may only last 5-6 minutes, but as you practice this routine and make it a habit, your child’s attention span will grow.
Create a Family Worship Habit
Whether you choose to have family worship in the morning, at night or both, make it a habit and be consistent. If you have family worship at the breakfast table, make sure you have worship every morning. If you have family worship in the evening, build it into your evening routine so that it becomes a part of your day just like brushing your teeth, bathing and putting on pajamas.
Children (and adults) thrive on consistency and routine. The more you make this a habit, the more your children will crave the family worship time.
Make Family Worship a Special Together Time
Family worship time should be the best time of the day. Make it a cozy, loving time when you all sit together on the couch, or you hold your young child on your lap. Make eye contact with your children and ask them questions while listening to their answers. Your children will have insights and questions that will help you grow.
Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted,
and become as little children,
ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.
Anytime you start doing something that will bring you closer to God, there will be distractions and frustrations. Be prepared for this and plan ahead so that this time is a reprieve from the phone, the TV, and the irritations of the day.
During family worship time, you are representing God to your children. This is true all day long, but especially when you are teaching them specifically how to worship, how to pray, and how to be reverent. The way you instruct or lead them will define their view of God.
Be Creative in Family Worship
There are so many fun ideas for what to do during family worship with kids besides reading the Bible and praying. Find age-appropriate ways to bring the Bible stories alive.
- Dress up and act out a Bible story. You can purchase Bible costumes or create your own from a sheet, bathrobe, and fabric.
- Do charades and have one person guess the story.
- Create a thanksgiving jar and add to it every day.
- Memorize Bible verses and have a friendly competition. Create a poster or bulletin board to keep track of how many verses you are each learning.
- Find a set of books about Bible characters that are age-appropriate for your children. This is one of our very favorite sets! My Bible Friends has a story about many different Bible characters written in a way that is easy for young children to engage with.
- For older children, this set of Bible Story books goes through the Bible in story form. Accurate and true to the Bible, these stories will help your child understand God’s plan from the Bible. This is an expensive set, but you will be able to read and learn along with your child.
- Another great to engage your children in the Bible stories is to use a set of felts that your child can use to create or re-tell the story. Children love to play-act so a felt set of Bible characters will help them engage with the stories and be able to picture the people and places.
- Call a lonely friend and have worship with them on the phone, Facetime or Zoom.
- Adopt a grandparent and write them a card every so often to let them know you are praying for them.
- Do a puppet show of a Bible story
Involve Everyone in Family Worship
Family worship isn’t only for the little kids and it doesn’t have to be a spectator sport. Include everyone in your family worship time. Young children can choose a Bible storybook to read from or can choose some songs to sing and act out with everyone. Older children can read a Bible verse or story. They can also plan a family worship program.
When our girls were little, we used to give them each a night to plan the worship. They would often write out little programs, choose songs, Bible verses to read, and pick the story. Giving them the ownership of planning the time helped them enjoy the experience.
Take turns leading out so that you can model family worship to your kids, but then allow your children to take turns as well. Start by giving them a part to plan or do. Perhaps you have a worship idea box or basket and you write your ideas on cards. Each night someone could choose a card.
You could also do this with songs that your family knows. Write down the titles so that you don’t end up singing the same song every single night.
Keep your Family Worship Time Fresh
Don’t be afraid to try something new. If you find that you are doing the same thing every night and the kids (or you) are getting bored with it, mix it up to keep the interest and specialness of this family worship time.
We are creatures of habit and it’s easy to become stuck in a rut doing the same thing over every time. Encourage your kids (and you) to think about what you are praying about so that the time is meaningful and thoughtful rather than rote and mindless.
You might want to ask each person to talk about something they are thankful for before you pray so that you will have things to be grateful for.
Take turns praying and who and how many people pray each time. If your kids are older, you can do a sentence prayer where one person starts with a sentence, and then the next one adds onto that all the way around the circle. Then the last person finishes and closes the prayer.
You could also do a popcorn prayer where one person starts with something they are thankful for. Then each person adds another thing they are thankful for. You can also do this with prayer requests. Once everyone has finished, the last person closes the prayer.
Printable Escape Room – Life of Joseph (click here)Printable Escape Room – Life of Joseph (click here)
Keep Your Family Worship Focused on Jesus
It can be easy to allow your family worship time with kids to become a family fun time and forget to keep the focus on Jesus. It is really important to have family time that includes playing, reading, talking, playing games, and doing crafts, but be intentional about keeping your focus on Jesus during family worship time.
To recap, there are 7 simple ways to make family worship with kids meaningful and special.
- Make it age-appropriate
- Create a family worship habit
- Make it a special time
- Be creative
- Involve everyone
- Keep it fresh – new ideas
- Stay focused on Jesus
Here are some additional resources you might enjoy…
Praying for your Child
Bible Study/Encouragement for Moms
Taking Care of Yourself as a Busy Mom
Teaching Your Child