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Family Bible Time

My Friend Debbie      In the early years of our marriage, I had always hoped that we could do such a noble thing as have devotions and Bible reading with our young family. We tried unsuccessfully several times and felt discouraged every time we had interruptions and changes in our schedule. We didn't know what the secret was. Other families appeared to manage it effortlessly, but we just couldn't seem to make it happen.


My Friend Debbie      About a year and a half ago, some friends of ours, Brad and Alyson Shedd, invited us to attend a conference at Harvest Assembly in Chesapeake, VA, led by Steve and Terri Maxwell. After attending the weekend family conference, we finally felt not only inspired, but equipped to have a regular family Bible time. It seemed simple and easy enough for us to do, all we had to do was open the Bible and read it together.


My Friend Debbie      We realized the importance of basing our family's foundation on the Word of God and spending this time together. We chose Monday evenings to be our weekly time specifically for the sole purpose of reading and listening to the Word of God together. We have made it a high priority since that time. Our oldest son, Garrett, a sophomore in college has arranged his work and class schedule around it. Each one of us preserve Monday nights on our busy calendars as our "Family Bible Time," and we have been blessed by it.


     We not only mark Sundays as a day for corporate worship at our church and host a Bible study in our home for others every other Sunday night, but we carefully guard the time we spend together as a family meditating on the truths and life-giving message that comes from actually reading aloud the Scriptures for all to hear.


My Friend Debbie      We've incorporated many of the things that are unique to our family that we enjoy. We've shared singing and music before or after the reading. We've also had skits and dramas from the younger ones. They love acting out the stories in the Bible that Jesus told. The Good Samaritan is one of their favorites. The older children like to take turns reading verses and they discuss what it means to them. My husband, Billy leads the reading unless he's asked me to share something, and then we pray at the end.


My Friend Debbie      On one occasion, we took some of my scrapbooking supplies and made individual bookmarks for our Bibles with the key verse we had studied: Mark 9:23, "If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes" (NKJV). We now each have a bookmark for our Bibles with the word "Believe" in varying designs of individual creativity. More importantly, we all have the passage embedded in our minds and hearts, as well as the memories of sharing the special time together.


     I encourage you to set aside a portion of time in your schedule and write it in your calendar--an appointment with the family! And make sure to tell everyone to bring their own Bibles. There is no certain way to do it, just open the Bible and begin to read it! It takes on a life of its own. The certain thing is that you won't regret it!


Photography by ShutterGirl Studios, LLC

Copyright © 2008-2015 Debbie Reynolds Harper

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