The Gift of Family Worship
My family enjoyed a wonderful Christmas yesterday, probably one of the best. We didn’t do anything big and we didn’t go anywhere. The kids woke up relatively late (7:00ish) and we basically just hung out together all day. But it was really special to me and I think it was for my wife and kids as well. One of the main things that made this Christmas, not just yesterday, but the entire Advent season so special was the attempt we made to keep our focus, individually and as a family, on Christ. (Of course, this is our year-round goal, but it was particularly so this season.) Leading up to the celebration of our Savior’s birth, we had read Scripture and devotional writings centered on His coming(s) and tried to keep our attention on the true “reason for the season.” Sure we gave each other gifts yesterday and had some really good food too, but before we did any of that, we worshipped together as a family.
We began by lighting the four Advent candles we have been burning during the month of December. The difference yesterday was that we were finally able to light our Christ candle, the centerpiece of our Advent wreath. I read two of the most majestic descriptions of Jesus (in my opinion) from Hebrews 1 and Colossians 1 as well as my favorite version of the nativity from John 1. With Christ’s magnificence and glory from these passages as our backdrop, we then read the traditional Christmas story from Luke 2. We concluded with prayer together.
Nothing fancy, nothing deep theologically, just opening God’s Word to the beauty of Christ and family prayer. God’s gift of family worship is truly a blessing. For many years, I didn’t lead my family as I should have in this regard. I regret those years but God’s grace is ever-powerful and He is quite capable of making up for lost time. If you don’t currently spend regular, devoted time as a family reading the Bible and praying together, I encourage you do so. If you are the man of the home, you need to lead your family. Don’t wait for the right time, just make it happen. You do not need to go deep, start simple. Let it be a gift to your family this coming year. God will bless you and your family for it!
“You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.” (Deuteronomy 6:5-7)