One often overlooked area of our children’s lives is teaching them to worship and praise God with their voices! Teaching our children to sing out in church is not a discipline matter, it is a heart matter. But one that can also be taught!
Be the example
In church be the example of what you want your kids to be. Sing out! Sing loud! Sing from your heart! Show your children what it means to truly worship and praise God. The song time in the church service is not meant to be “filler” time. It is supposed to be the time to prepare our hearts, minds, and bodies to focus on Spiritual things so that we are more able to receive instruction from the preaching time.
Practice at Home
At home during your daily devotions have a song time! With 7 kids we usually allow each child a turn to pick what song to sing on their day of the week! As a family we might also all practice a song together. As the older kids learn songs on the piano, they will play for the family so that the whole family can sing together. During this time, if a child has a bad attitude and does not want to sing, they get to stand up and sing by themselves!
Teach them how to stand in church. How to hold the hymnal. How to sing loudly. Have a practice church service at home and practice what good behavior looks like during the worship service. Find out what their favorite songs are and sing them as a family.
Music Filled Home
I read somewhere that if I wanted my kids to turn out right I should surround them with good music, good books, and good friends. I think there is some truth in that. God made us to desire music. Music is powerful. It can be used to move our spirit into a closer relationship with God or it can be used to influence our bodies to give ourselves over to the flesh. Wake your children up with music playing! Let your children hear Godly music in the car! Fill the home with music and let it be a part of their life!
When your children do an excellent job singing in church, reward them! Take them out for ice cream! Let them stay up a little later! Tell them how proud you are of them! Many times as parents we only focus on what our kids are not doing right, that we forget to praise them when they start to make progress!
How about you? How have you taught your children to sing in church?