While we believe that family-integration is the biblical norm for the church, there are also simple practical reasons for having children in the regular worship gathering of the church. In this article, Scott Brown lists four simple but valuable effects that come from having children in the worship service.
The Value of Children Worshiping with their Parents in Church
By Scott Brown
First of all, it should strike as strange that we even would take up this subject. Of course, children should be with their parents in the meetings of the church. But in this era, children are almost always hustled away from worship with adults into high energy activities geared to their inclinations. So the question for consideration here is, if you make the jump and engage your children in worship and teaching (that is usually geared only for adults) what would be the value? What follows are my own observations. I do not have any statistics or passages of scripture to prove any of it. These are the most obvious effects that I have observed. Here are four value-adding results of our bringing our families together for worship
1. It Fosters Closeness:
Bringing the whole family together for worship, prayer and instruction will enhance the unity love and effectiveness as a team for spreading the glory of God. Anytime people spend time together, it fosters closeness. This is just a fact of life and it applies to retreats with your company team members or anything. Meeting together in the church will do the same thing to foster closeness. When we are together, our hearts turn toward one another. At the same time, this should not make families islands, but it should bring them into rich relationship with the family of God. We come to the gathering of the church to link arms with the wider family of God. It would betray a deep unhealthiness if the families were closed societies. But, people I know who have broken rank to worship with their children, report that there is more love in the family as a result.
2. It places parents at center stage of spiritual development:
The value for the parents will be that it will place them in center stage of the child’s spiritual growth. All family members will hear the same thing together and the parents will be in better position to explain, ask questions and provide practical applications. It also helps parents understand areas in which the child needs instruction. Being together in this setting will: Bring obedience problems to the surface Bring broken relationship problems between parents and children to the surface All of these things will tend to help the children learn to look to the head of the household for ongoing instruction in God’s Word.
3. It Accelerates Skill Development:
This is an opportunity to teach your children some valuable skills that will accelerate their maturity. There are several things that they will have the opportunity to learn in the process: How to listen for life changing truth in a lecture setting How to take notes and share about what was learned How to honor the speaker by:
4. It accelerates maturity.
With parents helping children in the above areas, maturity is accelerated. There are many development oriented experiences that could be mentioned. Here are a few: Honoring the preaching of God’s Word and participating personally in its life changing message. Early exposure to advanced vocabulary Early exposure to advanced theological concepts After incorporating children into the normal life of the church for several years now, I have had the opportunity to see first hand what happens. Early maturity and enhanced love is the result. I don’t believe that most people would name these as results of the modern age graded Sunday school.