Family Discipleship Series: Worship
Updated: Jun 21, 2018
It’s so important for your kids to know that God wants to talk with them and He is always ready to hear what is on their hearts. God is pleased when we come together as a body of believers and worship Him—which is a way that we talk to Him. We tell Him what we love about Him through song, through prayers, and through acts of service. A large part of the life of our church at Redeemer is serving one another, and ultimately serving God. We set up and tear down every week, the Redeemer Kids’ teachers pray and prepare for the lesson all week, Bryan and Kevin study scripture and pray in order to prepare a message for us...and on and on. Worship is not just singing, although that is definitely an act of worship. John Piper says:
“The inner essence of worship is to know God truly and then respond from the heart to that knowledge by valuing God, treasuring God, prizing God, enjoying God, being satisfied with God above all earthly things. And then that deep, restful, joyful satisfaction in God overflows in demonstrable acts of praise from the lips and demonstrable acts of love in serving others for the sake of Christ.”
So much of this inner essence of worship will just go over many of our kid’s heads, however we desire for our kids to be around it even still. Not only around it but immersed in it! We want children in our services so that long before they can understand any of the songs we sing, or the messages they hear, they absorb what is valuable. Of course, as a parent, bringing children to worship can be a bit frightening. Let’s discuss some of the fears of many parents in bringing their children into worship:
Many parents fear their children becoming bored in the service. However, even as our kids say they are bored, the songs and lyrics become familiar, the messages and words start to make sense, and even if the sermon goes right over their heads, children are capable of understanding, hearing, and remembering an incredible amount of things. Do not let boredom become a deterrent to catching what is valuable in time. Redeemer Kids has activity bags ready and available for kids to work on during the service. Even as they work on their activities, you can be sure the kids are catching those valuable truths.
Kids are kids no matter what environment they are placed in. The park playground or a church service, they do not discriminate. As the parent, it will be up to you to decide what your children are able to withstand, however a church that welcomes children into their services are stronger for it. We desire for anyone to walk into our services and see our congregation represented as a whole: that includes the wiggly members of our congregation. Let them be little. And as they are wiggling and dangling their feet, our hope is that the word of God is reaching their hearts.
Teaching them to Worship:
There are no words that will equal what is communicated when a child sees their parent delighting in God through worship. More than any words, the best way to show children the value in worship is for you as the parent to fall in love with the worship of God. There is a big difference between the environment of our Redeemer Kids classrooms and our services, and our kids can decipher that something special is happening in here. The weight of worship can be felt by our kids. They can sense a sacred moment and a sacred place. Kids of a certain age are ready to be challenged with that weight and we hope that you will be praying for the right time for your children to engage in worship with us on Sunday mornings.
Once we leave Sunday services, it’s worthwhile to explain to our kids how worship should continue when we leave church. Our families ought to be mini-churches, a body serving one another and encouraging one another in the Lord as we go along the way. We ought to seek to know God every day, then respond from that knowledge by valuing and treasuring God, enjoying God, and being satisfied in God above all other earthly things. Through that deep satisfying knowledge, we ought to allow that to overflow in acts of service to one another so that God may be glorified. By inviting our children into the sacred acts of worship, we are stirring up awe in our children’s minds and hearts of the greatness of God.
By Jennifer Reeves
Read the other posts in this series on communion and prayer.
 John Piper, "What is Worship?" https://www.desiringgod.org/interviews/what-is-worship.