Covert Family Devotionals

Covert Family Devotionals - Parenting Like Hannah

Some of our best devotionals are in cafes

Ever have a child who went through a spy or detective stage? When our daughter was little, she went through a stage when she loved sneaking around the house looking for clues. She would look at things with her magnifying class (an homage to Nate the Great) and stand behind furniture listening for suspects to slip up and admit their “crimes”.

Well, parents can have a little fun, too! Instead of looking for clues, you can secretly drop clues for your kids on how to live a fulfilling, godly life. All you need to know is the secret to the covert family devotional.

Covert family devotionals are great because they can happen any time and in any place. You may want to go on a family hike or a picnic. Maybe you live far enough away from a city to sit outside and watch the stars. Fishing was invented for this type of devotional (I know, as long as you are quiet and don’t scare the fish!) My favorite place is often a little cafe or ice cream shop. You can even do them at home while cooking supper or washing dishes.

When you and your kids are relaxed and talking freely, you can slip in a covert family devotional very easily. The topic can be related to something one of your children just said or something you see around you. Perhaps something you are doing brings back a childhood memory for you.

Take whatever comes to mind and connect it to a godly principle. Perhaps the story is really about honesty, friendship, love, faith, arrogance or some other topic about which God has given us instructions. Now think about a person in the Bible who also had a similar experience or learned the same lesson.

Casually talk to your children about your insights. Starting with “That reminds me of” or “Now you know why God”, briefly tell the story or quote the scripture in your own words. Ask your kids what they think about the subject. Add your own hopes and prayers that they obey God’s words about this topic.

Don’t be offended or feel defeated if your kids respond with some variation of “We know, we know” and then quote the godly principle to you. It is actually a sign you are doing an awesome job of conveying godly principles to your children on a regular basis. As much as they may roll their eyes, you have planted strong tapes in their minds of God’s Words. Whether or not they choose to obey them will be up to them, just us it was to us. Having God’s Words firmly planted in them though, will give them the tools to make better choices.

So grab your kids, a blanket, some snacks and hit the road. Take your kids someplace quiet and have a covert family devotional. It may not seem like much, but you are helping place God’s Words on their minds and hopefully hearts. To me that is one of the most important things we can do as Christian parents.

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Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. (Deuteronomy 11:18-19 NIV)