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How To Study the Bible and Help Your Kids Find Real Life {Free Printable}

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The school day starts really early in Germany. Last year when we lived there, we went through seasons when it was almost still dark as the school bell rang.

So we had to leave home at like 7am to get the girls to school on time. Like ready to go. Out the door. Coats, hats, scarves and mittens on. Breakfast eaten, teeth brushed, shoes on enough to walk down the apartment building stairs without tripping. By seven o’clock in.the.morning.

That was a challenge. Also, aside from this early morning deal, every day held unique difficulties of its own.

Because we lived in the land of foreign, and so much of life was uncomfortable for us that year. We were foreigners in the land where morning bus commutes involved personal-space violations that would send most Americans running for open, breathable air. Also, my mono-lingual kids went to school where only German was spoken.

It was hard.

There was nary a morning when we didn’t have uncomfortable staring us down as we got out of bed and ready for the day. We cried a lot. Especially in the morning.

But God used those unsettled everyday mornings to point us to Himself. We found ourselves, as a family, needing to hear from Him regularly. Just to make it through the day. Consequently, we found ourselves in God’s Word together before 7am every day before heading into the day.

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I was finally the Christian I always thought I was supposed to be but somehow never really became because I’m not a morning person and studying the Bible at o-dark-thirty was something I could do at o-mid-morning-thirty and why was I doing it anyway if it was only just to say I did it? I mean, God doesn’t give out stars for reading the Bible early in the morning. At least I don’t think He does.

But last year in Germany, every morning, before getting ready, the four of us would read the day’s selection from the kids’ version of Jesus Calling. It would start with a piece of something from the Bible and go through a sort of challenge for the day. Help us understand what that particular passage meant.

It was almost uncanny how often the day’s reading applied to our very situation.

But we left Germany last June, and our comfortable returned and the mornings got a lot less scary and our very real and obvious need to hear from the God of Life kind of slipped into the background.

Because there is never a time when we don’t desperately need His input, His life, His Word speaking into our every moment. But sometimes that need gets covered up by the comfortable we find ourselves in. Last year’s vacation from comfortable just made us more aware of it.

Still, here we are inside November, six months in to our new life after a year abroad. And while the settling in is nice, there are pieces of our life over there that I am unwilling to part with.

Like afternoon coffee.

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And helping my kids realize how desperately they need God’s Word every.single.day.

So last week we went back to our German-living ways. (Yes, as a matter of fact I do still enjoy afternoon coffee. Every day. But I’m not talking about that.) After the Mann left for work, the girls and I got out our Bibles before getting dressed and brushing our hair and putting on our deodorant. And we all read something different from the Word that is God’s life spoken straight to His people.

I let them choose what they would read, but I asked them about it when they were done. I quickly realized, however, that sometimes it’s difficult for them to figure out how God might want them to use that truth today.

Like when my almost twelve-year-old decided to do a survey of the Bible’s shortest books and started with Obadiah and Haggai. (For which I owe her props for figuring out a way to push the boundaries even in this.)

So we argued calmly discussed how it’s my job to teach her how to look to God’s Word for how to do life. I assured her I was not out to torture her but that I actually want to see her love God and His Word with all that she is because I believe His is the only real way to live.

Then I replayed that conversation in my brain for a few hours. Somewhere in the middle of that replay, God gave me an idea.

Remember the verse in 2 Timothy 3 that talks about Scripture and why God gave it to us?

The whole Bible was given to us by inspiration from God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives; it straightens us out and helps us do what is right. It is God’s way of making us well prepared at every point, fully equipped to do good to everyone. (vv16,17 TLB)

Well, I used it to come up with some questions that might help. It’s a little printable that, if she ever decides to use something I created, will lead her through each part of God’s purpose for any portion of His Word.

Because I want my kids to know why it matters that God included Haggai and Obadiah and Jude and every other everything that’s in the Bible.

Because what if God wants to use my kids to change the world? I want to do everything I can to help them listen for the Holy Spirit and recognize His voice. I want to teach them to pursue God’s truth and live it and know it in their every day.

I want to point them to God’s Word for how to do life today. And this is the best way I can figure how to do it.

I’m pretty sure He does want to use my kids to change the world. And I believe with all my heart He wants to use your kids too. That’s why I’m sharing this tool with you. I hope you’ll show it to your kids. I hope you’ll tell your friends about it. I hope you’ll even use it for yourself if you want to.

Because all that stuff about God’s Word changing our kids’ life? Well, it’s true for me and you too.

Anyway — I am so, so excited about this, and I really hope you find it helpful because finding life inside God’s Word is something I am super passionate about. And I desperately want that for my kids. And for your kids. And for you.

**You can click these words, and you will find the Lets Study the Bible Today Printable which you will then be able to download or print. Happy Bible studying!!

I really want to have a discussion about this in the comments today. But, in all honesty, I’m kind of afraid. Because I am fully aware that a question like How do you point your kids to God’s Word in the every day? could easily lead to comparing or shaming or seeing other parents as maybe better than each other. But I want to ask it anyway. And in asking I hope each one of us can find encouragement here in this place. Because, really, aren’t we all just trying to point to Jesus anyway?

 

10 Thoughts on “How To Study the Bible and Help Your Kids Find Real Life {Free Printable}

  1. This is a struggle for me. How old are your kids? Mine are 8, 6, and 3, and it is hard. We try to read the Jesus Calling book in the mornings, and I pray over them as they go to school. We used to have a dedicated bible reading time in the evenings, but after we finish homework and eat dinner sometimes formal bible study doesn’t happen. The evenings are maxed out, yet we really need it. I am looking forward to advent and returning to a bible time that is less structure but more consistent. I guess I could start something similar now. 🙂 Thanks for this post.

    • Hi Jamie! My girls are 11 (she’s almost 12) and 9. So they are both pretty good independent readers. It has been a pretty constant struggle for us too. Except when we were in Germany. Because I totally know what you mean — life is just so stinkin crazy and busy and maxed out. I wonder if you could just take five minutes and read like 1 or 2 verses or a story together or something and talk about what it means with your kids. Or you could do that with Jesus Calling maybe while you’re eating breakfast or dinner or right after. I don’t think it has to be anything formal at all. I LOVE that you pray over your kids!! Love. That. Thanks so much, Jamie.

  2. Bria — Well done! I’m past the “help your kids with reading God’s Word while they’re at home” stage but I read it with a mentor’s filter. How can I use this to encourage an adult who has not done regular Bible reading? And I think it works well, especially for someone who wants to begin journaling.

    Incidentally, I’ve been pondering “Do today well” as an encouragement to myself and others. Don’t expect to change your life, a habit or anything else overnight. Instead, strive to do today well. Your last question really speaks to that.

    Thanks for your thoughts today!
    sharon

    • Hi Sharon! I was actually thinking when I named this post that it would help all of us. I’m trying to come up with a cool way to make some kind of customized journal with it. (More than just answering separately from the questions. Like I’m thinking a Study The Bible This Way kind of spiral notebook dealy.) But I haven’t gotten there yet. Let me know if you think of something. Also, you are awesome.

  3. beckydaye on November 25, 2013 at 2:44 pm said:

    Great post as always, sweet friend! And are you surprised that I was thinking about this very topic this afternoon as I dropped Gibson off at Preschool? Somehow, I know you are not. I love how God seems to have us walking such similar roads. (are you questioning your purpose in blogging, by any chance? Cause I’m really struggling with that right now! 🙂 but I digress…)
    Last year for Christmas, I bought the boys The Action Bible. I thought they would love it. But they really didn’t pay much attention to it. Until last week, when Ethan was looking for a book to read for his 30 minutes of reading homework. I suggested the Action Bible and he started to read it. Over 30 minutes later, he came downstairs and he said, “Mommy, did you know that Moses hit the rock because he was angry and that he didn’t get to go to the Promised Land? I looked it up and it says so IN THE BIBLE”. He was so animated! Since then, he has started doing devotions- reading the Action Bible, finding the passage in his Bible and then writing down the topics and the references in a notebook.
    It has blown me away (and he wants to take all 3 everywhere he goes!). I used to stress so much about how I felt like I was missing the boat with the kids and not being consistent with devotions. And then I was reminded of how inconsistent I have been, and I just started praying. Praying that they would long for God’s Word, that they would hunger and thirst for righteousness. And then I prayed that I would be faithful, but that I wouldn’t stress.
    I feel like Ethan’s response is a direct answer to that prayer. I was faithful to encouraging him to read the Action Bible. But I couldn’t have predicted the results (and we all know that easily could have gone the other way and no doubt he will have times of wandering in his future). I’m just learning to truly release results to God.
    Now that I have written a post on your wall, I will stop. But I guess my main point is that I pray for them, which means I am always ready to point them to Jesus (in theory- you KNOW how imperfect I am!). I just don’t think we can emphasize the importance and the effectiveness of praying for our children.
    Did you get to meet Brooke McGlothlin at Allume? She has boys and has written a book of praying for sons. But it works for girls too. And I just love it!
    Love YOU!!

    • Becky, thank you thank you thank you for this. I am so not good at consistently praying for my kids. I have so much more to say. But this. The praying thing. It’s what I needed. Thank you.

  4. What a great post, thank you being true..the fact that you share this part of your life the “land of foreign” and now the “land of comfortable” and how we ALL relate whether it is with our children or ourselves is a great blessing!!

    Thanks for the encouragement…love you!! Keep up the good words and most of all keep up the good work and words you are doing and giving to those beautiful granddaughters of mine!

    Love ya,
    Linda aka Mom

    PS I will be passing this along to some other young Moms!!

    • Sheila bauer on November 26, 2013 at 10:56 am said:

      Thank you bri! I want and desire nothing more then Jesus to be real in my kids daily lives and it can be difficult to fit the bible in and have it make a difference. I love your simple print off that they can do with me and on their own to keep and look back on. It’s all about Him and I don’t want to be lost in my comfortable world with my kids not realizing what matters most above everything else! Thanks love your posts! Sheila Bauer

      • “It’s all about Him and I don’t want to be lost in my comfortable world with my kids not realizing what matters most above everything else!” Yes, Sheila!!! Me too!! Thanks, friend. 🙂

    • Thanks, Mom. 🙂

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