I went to pull my Bible out of the Bible basket after dinner. I have asked Adam numerous times to lead a time of devotion for our family, and he really wants to, but we’ve had a hard time just doing it. Should we use a curriculum? Should it have a craft or interactive time? So many questions about doing it the right way just overwhelmed us and kept us from getting started. BUT WE NEED IT. So, I pulled out the Bible with no clue as to what scripture I would go over, and he said, “When you finish, I have something I’d like to read” I told him I had no clue what I was going to read, so please just go ahead. He chose Romans 12:2- Do not be conformed to the patterns of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is–his good, pleasing, and perfect will.
His reason for choosing this verse was because of some sassiness with have experienced with a certain daughter after she spends some time watching the Disney channel at the grandparents’ houses. Now, I am not saying that Disney or t.v. is evil, but I do feel like they depict a certain image of and for tweens that is inappropriate. The whole, “I can back talk my parent and be sassy and still get my way.” Even if the said teen gets it resolved and figured out in the end, making the right choice, my kids are still seeing the negative behavior modeled. Now, my child chooses to emulate it sometimes, knowing it is wrong, but until they are more firm in their understanding of what God expects of them, which is what we also expect of them, I don’t like to expose them to things they aren’t prepared to handle. Now, I am also not blaming the grandparents because I honestly didn’t think it was that harmful for them to watch certain shows every once in a while. But it never fails. When they watch those shows, they try out what they see in them. Garbage in, garbage out, as the saying goes. We have to guard our hearts and minds, and since we have been placed in charge of these children, we have to make sure that they know how to do that before we put them in the place to actually do it. You wouldn’t send a soldier to the front line with no training. And it’s a war. Do not be deceived. The enemy wants the hearts of our children as much as he wants ours.
So, back to the story. We discussed this verse with our kids. And we asked Coleman what ‘transform’ means by relating it to the Transformers. “What do the Transformers do?” “They change from a robot to a car.” Because we are a large family, we tend to raise our hands for a turn to talk at the table, and the little ones like to say, “Ohh, ohh, ohh!” as they thrust their hand in the air as high as they possibly can. Joseph did this repeatedly, and when called on, he simply said, “The robot turns into a car? Huh?” By discussing something relevant with the boys, we helped the verse make sense for them and kept their attention. Then we added moves another night because it’s easier for kids to learn things when they are moving. Their sensory receptors in the joints are activated, making their brains more receptive to the information. As a matter of fact, I had to picture the moves to help me remember the very first words of the verse to type in this note! The other thing we have done is make sure to discuss their behavior and choices with the key words “transform” and “conform”. Example: “Coleman, is that a conforming behavior or transformed behavior?” or “Coleman, that is awesome! You are really acting like a transformed person!” This morning, he was being amazingly sweet and sharing cars with his brothers, and I complimented him with a simple “You are being so sweet!” to which he replied, “Mommy, I’m being transformed!”
It works. No fancy curriculum or cute, creative idea book necessary. No craft. No prep. Just opening the Word of God and reading it. They still wiggle, but if they are listening, then I don’t care. We’ve experienced amazing results with the little boys and the bigger girls. Don’t get hung up on doing it “right”. Just do it. Read the scriptures with your kids. We got our inspiration here: http://www.aholyexperience.com/2011/06/one-habit-that-radically-changes-a-family/.