Teaching Kids about Sabbath

Parenting Q&A

I've recently felt God leading me to practice Sabbath, but I want my family involved too. How do I teach my children to follow and appreciate Sabbath?

A Sabbath is a day unhurried, a day to rest. If there's anything we and our busy children need, it's simply to take a day to slow down.

That doesn't mean everyone must sit on the couch and stare at the walls. Rather, it's a day to set aside work to focus on God and on family and friends. It's a day of get-tos instead of have-tos. You can do things together on Sabbath: a leisurely meal, a bike ride, a board game. Or just let your kids chill out—preferably without electronic entertainment.

For our family, Sabbath always involves going to church, but also plenty of "downtime." My children know it's a day when I'm "interruptible." Because I don't work, run errands, do housework, or turn on the computer on the Sabbath, I'm not too busy to talk, listen, or just hang out with them. That's more of a gift to them than you may realize.

To get started, it's as easy as simply setting some boundaries. For example, if you decide not to shop on Sabbath, warn your kids that you won't be running to the store on Sunday to pick up, say, last minute supplies for a school project that's due Monday.

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Parenting; Relaxation; Sabbath
Today's Christian Woman, March/April , 2013
Posted March 20, 2013

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