*Warning* You cannot compress spirituality in your home into a single hour once a week. Your Family will grow in Christ as you pursue Christ together day in and day out, through thick and thin, pains and pleasures, joy and sorrow. The following 10 points are some hopeful helps to that effect:
1. Learn to see that every opportunity to be with your family is a teaching moment that reveals to each of them who Christ really is or is not to you by your word and deed.
2. Learn to recognize the image of Christ, though yet fully developed, burgeoning in each of your family members, and then edify and encourage them in that direction.
3. Learn the natural gatherings of your family and enhance them intentionally by pointing them to Christ during those times. (Our family is typically all under the same roof at or when….etc.)
4. Learn to take your families’ individual needs to God’s throne of Grace instantly, in season and out of season, dropping everything for them to do so, instilling in them the priority of Christ and prayer over the activities of daily living. Christ is ready at all times to receive our petitions, yet we are not always ready to rightly bring them. Do not let your family continue in the thought that prayer is reserved only for certain people, certain places or certain problems.
5. Learn God’s Word together. Develop family memorization of verses, and make this a joyful event. Know each member's capacity to learn and keep this in mind as you set the bar. Enjoy creativity with this process of learning Scripture together. Compete if it helps, but not if it creates tension and upset. Take turns choosing passages and set a goal for being able to quote it together. Use the passage picked to identify personal struggles and weakness to be aided by one another and encouraged through. Seek and discuss how the passage was applicable to your days during meal times, for instance. Remind each other of the challenge, egging each other on through text messages, emails, phone calls, sticky notes, and good ol’ fashioned face to face time.
6. Learn that gimmicks don’t last. There is no trick to spiritual growth; no shortcut but the straight line of obedience between the point of where you are today and where Christ’s image is in you fully later. This is a journey, not a 100 yard dash. Therefore, watch out for expectations on your family to become overnight spiritual giants. This is not helpful, practical or feasible. Instead, evaluate over the course of a year, from year to year, the changes and growth that is developing in your lives spiritually, and joyfully celebrate the work of Christ together. Curricula and courses come and go, but the Word of the Lord stands forever. “Of the writing of books, there is no end,” said Solomon the Wise. Anything that promises for you to become the best Christian ever or to radically alter your Christian faith, like a get rich quick commercial, is lying to you. Anyone trying to sell you a book or video series that says they have found the secret to successful soul-winning, church growth, or ensuring that your family never has problems is not telling you the whole truth. However, the day in and day out study of the Word of God, walking in the Spirit, and the pursuit of the mind and heart and image of the Lord Jesus will take you and your family on an ever-changing yet never changing journey of a lifetime, where what you follow and pursue and seek remains ever true, but you are being changed by the Potter’s hand into His masterpiece.
7. Learn that you can teach your family to hate God’s Word by the abuse of it to suit your own purposes and not the Lord’s in your home. Remember the words of Jesus to Pharisees compared to His words to children.
8. Learn to be God’s child as you seek to lead your own children. Worship with your family, approaching the Father in the same manner in which you delight to see when your children call your name as their parent. We often remember that we are the children of God yet put nothing into the practice of living out this new identity. Learn to be a son. God is your Father. Learn to be His child. In doing so, you will exemplify what sort of children your own children should aspire to be. You teach your child to be good by being a good child yourself. Let them hear you liken their role to yours, as you both are children of the Heavenly Father together.
9. Learn to prioritize the relationships of your life in a godly order. Here is what I use that I believe is based on the whole of Scripture:
10. Learn to get alone with the Father and seek Him in prayer, the Word, silence, and the Spirit. You cannot do more than Christ can you? He also got alone to pray and seek His Father, though He is the very Son of God. Even though He could minister the miraculous to thousands in the power of the Spirit, He set for us an example that your family needs to observe in your lifestyle as well: aloneness with God.
In all of these ten things, Christ is our teacher. Your resource is the very breath of God, breathed upon you through the very Spirit of God, bound up in the very image of God, who is Jesus Christ, lived out also through the Church of God. Observe Him in their lives, aid and help one another, read of Him, learn of Him, study Him, seek Him and you WILL FIND HIM. Your family and church family really can find Him together.