Worshiping as a Family with the Church
We take the occasional break from children's church to help acclimate you and your family to worshiping together for the whole service. This is our goal for our families - we encourage you and want to help you incorporate your children into the worship of God when the church meets. Worship is like a language - we teach it to our children by including them and exposing them to singing, prayer, preaching, giving, and the ordinances.
Why include children in worship? Here are some of the primary reasons:
1) Participating in worship services as a child is a training ground for worship fluency as they grow and mature.
2) Parents are the best models for worship. Parents model all sorts of proper behaviors and attitudes for their children and have more influence in their lives than anyone else, especially when they are younger.
3) The ordinances are impactful for children to observe.
4) As the church worships through song, children can memorize the words and sing along.
5) Worship services provide opportunities for kids to observe the church loving one another in ways that are influential and instructive.
6) It is a picture of unity within the body of Christ.
7) Prayer and biblical preaching are instructive, even for young children - kids pick up on and remember more than you might think!
We want to help you include your children in worship. The first step is preparation.. We post the music on our blog every week ahead of time. You can have times of family worship at home utilizing music the church will sing together and at the same time, help prepare your kids for worship with the church.
How do we get ready for this?
Take time on Saturday before bed to pray together and get ready for church. Lay out Bibles, set aside your/their offering, put a bag together if needed with books/quiet activities if you choose, and make Sunday morning less stressful.
If your child doesn't have/bring a Bible to church, make a change! A more kid-friendly translation such as the NIrV is recommended for younger children. Older kids will benefit from having the same translation being used in the service (ESV).
Take your child to the bathroom before the service starts. Each week, kids' bulletins are available with activities and space to take notes. There are sermon listening guides available as well. I recommend the book Parenting in the Pew as a resource to encourage and help you along the way. Check out this post for other in-service ideas.
Like all things in which we want to learn and improve, it takes practice. Don't be discouraged by squirming, questions, or other challenges, especially early on. Follow up with your kids after the service about their questions, things they learned, and things that stood out to you. Parents have the great responsibility and privilege of training and discipling their children. We are here to help equip you.