I don’t know where to start . . .
Tell me if this sounds like you. You wanted to have something that your family could do together. You asked yourself, how will this work with a toddler? You tried it all: reading adult devotions; reading kids’ devotions; reading devotions before you eat; reading them after you eat. It is just hard to keep up with it all, and to keep your little one focused. A solution is sitting right in front of you, and you probably didn’t even realize it was there!
I’m not even so concerned about which hymnal it is! Whether it’s The Lutheran Hymnal, Lutheran Worship, or Lutheran Service Book, each hymnal has great resources to help guide your young family through devotions.
You may be asking, why would you recommend a hymnal if we aren’t focused on singing? That question has several answers:
- I’m betting you have one of the hymnals laying around somewhere. If you don’t, I bet your parents do. If they don’t, might I recommend you pick one up here?
- Each hymnal has resources for daily prayer that include a time for devotion.
- Go ahead and sing! Your little ones will love singing with you every morning, night, or both!
Of the entire list, let me address #3 first. Repetition is so important for developing kids. Instead of getting too deep into the weeds of child development, take a quick second and Google “repetition in toddlers” to find a wealth of resources that talk about the benefits of repetition. Your little ones cannot read yet, but they will learn quickly by hearing the same thing every day. It won’t be too long before your child will be participating with you in the prayer portion of your devotional time!
We will need to be a little creative in TLH. For family use, I recommend using A Form for Opening and Closing Christian Schools found on page 50. While this is not necessarily written for family use, the form and structure is easily used in the home.
One thing you will need to familiarize yourself with in using these prayer services will be the “rubrics.” In LSB and LW, the rubrics are found in red italics. In TLH, the rubrics are just the italic words. These rubrics tell you what to do. When you find the point in the rubric set aside for reading Scripture, this is the perfect time to incorporate your Scripture reading and devotion.
By following the “ordinaries” (the things that don’t change) of each prayer setting, your little one will begin to participate with you, even when they can’t read!
Our next post will discuss a tool you may have never heard of before, Treasury of Daily Prayer.
Too see all the posts in this series, follow one of the links below.