Now is the perfect time to intentionally recalibrate the rhythms in your home and incorporate spiritual practices you can do together as a family. I’ll be sending ideas in my emails that will go out on Tuesdays and Fridays while we are not able to see each other in person.

Todays is an excerpt from the book Faithful Families by Traci Smith.  This practice has helped me and my family begin and end our day well by focusing on prayer.

Morning and Evening Prayers for All ages

This adaptation for families is simplified and includes family interaction. This practice becomes more meaningful with repletion, and for this reason I suggest families try out the practice for at least a full week.

Materials: Order of Morning/Evening Prayer (below)

Time Investment: 15 minutes

How to:

  • Before beginning, decide which person will read each part in the liturgy below.
  • Gather: say, “We gather together for Morning (Evening) Prayer. Let us begin by singing a song togheter.”
  • Sing: decide on a song to sing together. Choose one of the songs below, or another song tha tis meaningful to our family.

Morning Songs: “You are my sunshine”, “This Is the Day”, “Rise and Shine”, “All Things Bright and Beautiful”, “This Little Light of Mine”, “Morning Has Broken”

Evening Songs: “Kumbaya”, “God Is So Good”, “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star”, “Silent Night”, “Brahms Lullaby”, “All the Pretty Horses”

  • Read: Psalm 145

I will exalt you, my God the King;
I will praise your name for ever and ever.
Every day I will praise you
and extol your name for ever and ever.

Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise;
his greatness no one can fathom.
One generation commends your works to another;
they tell of your mighty acts.
They speak of the glorious splendor of your majesty—
and I will meditate on your wonderful works.[b]
They tell of the power of your awesome works—
and I will proclaim your great deeds.

 They celebrate your abundant goodness
and joyfully sing of your righteousness.

 The Lord is gracious and compassionate,
slow to anger and rich in love.

The Lord is good to all;
he has compassion on all he has made.
All your works praise you, Lord;
your faithful people extol you.
They tell of the glory of your kingdom
and speak of your might,
so that all people may know of your mighty acts
and the glorious splendor of your kingdom.
Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,
and your dominion endures through all generations.

The Lord is trustworthy in all he promises
and faithful in all he does.[c]
The Lord upholds all who fall
and lifts up all who are bowed down.
The eyes of all look to you,
and you give them their food at the proper time.
You open your hand
and satisfy the desires of every living thing.

The Lord is righteous in all his ways
and faithful in all he does.
The Lord is near to all who call on him,
to all who call on him in truth.
He fulfills the desires of those who fear him;
he hears their cry and saves them.
The Lord watches over all who love him,
but all the wicked he will destroy.

 My mouth will speak in praise of the Lord.                                                Let every creature praise his holy name
for ever and ever.

  • Reflect: For the morning practice, someone says, “Take some time to reflect quietly about the day before you.  What kind of day would you like to have today? Are you nervous or excited about anything coming up today?” For the evening practice, someone says, “How was your day today? How did you see God at work today?”
  • Share: Each person has the opportunity to share one thing about the day to come or past if he or she chooses, but are not required to.
  • Benediction: Morning: say, “Let us go out into our day now, ready for the joys and challenges ahead.”
  • Evening: Say, “AS we go now to tsleep, may we remember God’s faithfulness not only this day, but all our days as well.”

Everyone says: “Amen,” and goes about their day, or to sleep.

Notes:

  • This practice should be modified to best fit the ages of children in your family. Those with small children will want to shorten the talking time and perhaps increase the singing to two or three songs.
  • Some older children and adolescents who might not want to sing with the family might be encouraged to bring a favorite piece of music for the family to listen to togheter.
  • Remember, part of the beauty of this practice is the rhythm it creates for daily life.  Threfore, aim to try the practice for at least a week.  What doesn’t go well the first day might seem easy by the end of the week.  After doing the practice regularly, check in with the family:

“How is it going? How can we change our Morning/Evening Prayer? What have we learned?