Items Needed: Spiral notebook, pen/pencil
Start a prayer journal. Buy a spiral notebook. On the first page, draw a vertical line down the middle. On the left side write “Requests” and on the right side write “Answers.”
Every evening after dinner, take five minutes to pray. Write the requests in the notebook. Then say sentence prayers, asking God to answer the requests. Put the date requested and the date answered. (You could do this at bedtime if your family gathers together then.)
Howard Hendricks, a Christian author, said he did this when his children were growing up, and this is one of the most valuable things they own. He plans to pass it down to his children as evidence that God is real and hears and answers prayer.
Having a strong prayer life takes self-discipline, making ourselves do what we know we should do. Daniel and his friends showed self-discipline when they obeyed God’s laws instead of the laws of the King of Babylon. When we choose to make right choices, others will see God living in us.
God is able to do more than what you can think or ask. Don’t just ask for things, but ask Him to help you make right choices, to obey your parents, to love your enemies. He wants you to pray to Him. Don’t be timid about asking, because God is listening, and He will answer.
Items Needed: Special treat, timer
Show your child the treat of your choice. Explain that they may eat one treat now or wait 5-10 minutes and get a second treat. (Choose an amount of time that is age appropriate for your child.) Place the treat in front of your child, set a timer, and observe.
Try to avoid making comments or walking around. Observe how your child responds. Most will distract themselves or cover the treat to remove a bit of the temptation. When the timer goes off, reward your child if he/she resisted eating the treat right away.
Take a few minutes to discuss the activity, asking the following questions:
What helped you resist eating the treat right away?
If you were alone, would it be easier or harder to resist the treat?
Would you have made a different choice if you were the only one in the room?
Did your sibling influence your decision?
Why did you eat the treat before the timer went off?
What would have helped you wait longer?
How long do you think you could wait?
What did this test teach you about self-discipline?
Self-discipline is when we make ourselves do what we know we should. Daniel and his friends showed self-discipline when they obeyed God’s laws instead of the laws of the King of Babylon. When we choose to make right choices, others will see God living in us. Let’s do our best to practice self-discipline this week!
Items Needed: Special treat, timer
Introduce your child to this fun self-control game. It works great in a long line or waiting to checkout at the store, but it can be a fun family activity too.
Explain that they must stay as still as a statue for a certain amount of time. Choose a time that is age appropriate for your child. If they stay still until the timer goes off, reward them with a small treat.
You can overlook giggles and minor movements, depending on your child’s age. When the timer goes off, explain to your child that this game required self-discipline, making yourself do what you know you should do. Remind them that self-discipline is one way we can honor the Lord.
Daniel and his friends honored the Lord with their self-discipline when they obeyed God’s laws instead of the laws of the King of Babylon. They chose not to eat the king’s food, and that took self-discipline. When we choose to make right choices like Daniel and his friends, others will see God living in us. Let’s do our best to practice self-discipline this week!