Shepherding A Child's Heart and Instructing A Child's Heart.
We visited the church of a friend before my first son was born and a gentleman gave us a copy of Shepherding A Child's Heart. I tell you that it was one of the best gifts I have ever received. If you haven't read it, you must. Then you need to read Ginger Plowman's take on Shepherding and read "Don't Make Me Count To Three". And then you absolutely have to read Instructing A Child's Heart.
These books encourage and teach Heart Oriented Discipline, focusing on a child's heart, not just changing behavior!
Back to what I am supposed to be blogging about.
I left the conference so very encouraged and even more convicted about our responsibility in raising our boys.
I felt convicted to pray for and with my boys each morning when they wake up. We pray that God will help them to obey and be respectful (things we are focusing on) because we know that these glorify Him. I can honestly tell you that doing this helps us all to start the day with "happy hearts".
I felt encouraged to focus more on Formative Instruction. In other words, teaching Micah what is expected before the problem, influencing him rather than exuding authority, explaining in ways that make sense to him. Ted reminded me that I sound like Charlie Brown's mother "whah, whah, whah, whah" when I wait to try to explain/teach when I am disciplining Micah. He doesn't care what I am saying, he just wants to know what his consequence is. Ah Hah!!!! So that's what the glazed over eyes, looking through me, gone to your happy place face is!
My husband talked on the way home and the BIGGEST thing we BOTH felt convicted about...it was obvious that God was laying it on our hearts together...was our lack of Family Worship!
Let me just tell you that when Mr. Tripp was talking about this, I felt really silly when I thought about what it must look like. I know that is terrible but I am being honest here. It sounded a little hokey. I admitted this to my hubby and instead of thinking bad of me he explained that it was probably going to feel weird at first. Since it was something we had NEVER tried. We vowed to make it work for us, we knew the benefits would outweigh the "feeling silly" and ultimately it would glorify God.
You see, one thing that really struck me. One thing that pricked my heart. Made it heavy. Then turned it warm and content was my prayer over this: "If you are not impressed with God, if you are not in His word....your children will not be!" "Show your children life, through the lens of God's Word, and God's Ways!!!"
I know this is getting long so I will wrap it up. This is what works for us. It may not work for you, but I pray that you will find something that does. It felt silly at first, but it is just part of our nightly routine now. Some nights we don't do it, and that is ok. We are trying. I have seen my boy settle, be still, listen. I see a love for singing and praying to the Lord. It has changed my own heart. I have learned. I have been more focused on Him.
1. Daddy opens us in prayer. We settle down.
2. Micah's bible. We read a bible lesson.
3. Seeds Family Worship CD "Songs of Faith". We sing one of these, for a whole week. Micah plays his play guitar.
4. Weekly church bulletin. We sing the childrens song from this. We sing the same song for a whole week. Micah plays his play guitar some more.
5. Prayer. We take turns praying for what God has laid on our hearts.
Please leave a comment and tell me about your family worship. It doesn't have to look like mine. If you don't do a family worship, I encourage you to give it a try, even one night a week. I never saw myself doing this, but I am so glad we tried it!