Early this morning Bryce Butler sent me an article from John Piper on leading family devotions with the very young. The Desiring God site has the complete article and audio to download. Here are some of the best excerpts:
From the family standpoint there would always be a time to meet. It was at the breakfast table in those early days. So you have a child who is now rested—at least it's the way it worked for our boys and Talitha—they were rested and had a full tummy. So they were relatively happy.
And at that moment Daddy gets out a big book. And he reads from it, a paragraph maybe. This little child doesn't understand anything I'm saying. He's six months old, or nine months, or a year.
He doesn't understand anything I'm saying, but he's learning big time what is going on here: he's watching daddy take leadership; he's noticing a book; he's hearing reading; he's watching them pray afterwards; and he's learning massively important things before he understands a word that is going on here...
You're not demanding faith from this little pagan, because he's not ready even to come to those terms. You're doing teaching: you're building and your exulting and your praying and your asking, and he's watching all this happen as you build that into his life.
By John Piper. © Desiring God. Website: desiringGod.org