I’ve always been fidgety in church. I had to do something with my hands. I had to keep busy.
Thankfully my mom always had a pen and paper in her purse that she’d pass off to me so I could doodle cartoons. I think she was just as fidgety herself, so she came well prepared.
It wasn’t really until I got involved, that things began to change for me. I started enjoying church more. It gave me a sense of belonging, and a unique way to worship the Lord.
But we still had a problem. Once the music was done, and I put the violin down, I was fidgety again.
Then Dad had an idea for me and my brothers. “If you can tell me what the service is about every Sunday, I’ll buy each of you a Slurpee after church,” he’d say.
Things got interesting. We had an incentive to sit up, pay attention, and listen to what’s being said.
Every once in a while, people from the church would see us at the store getting our Slurpees after the service. It certainly made our pastor laugh, but the thing is — it worked.
It was an incentive to get us started. After a while however, we got into the habit of paying attention without the incentive. We wanted to learn and we wanted to listen.
It wasn’t all that long ago, really. And so I understand the struggle some kids have to sit still through a service.
I’ve created a book for this reason called, Busy Books: Sermon Notes for Kids. It works on a point system. You listen for key words, and you earn points. It also has space to take notes and write down questions you might have so you can ask your parents later.
Unlike activity books that draw you away form the pulpit, this book is designed to get kids interested and to keep them interested in the service.
Parents can also provide an incentive like a gold star, or a little treat if you fill out the book.
It’s a great way to encourage your kids to come prepared and to be prepared to listed.
After creating this book, alongside my mom, I realized that I wanted one too, so I’m in the process of creating one that’s geared toward teenagers and young adults like myself.
Busy books are one way to get them interested, but of course there are so many more.
Here are four that stand out to me:
1. Discuss the service and offer an incentive.
This can be anything from a gold star to a small treat — a little recognition goes a long way. If your kids are anything like me, they’ll look forward to the weekly discussions with you.
2. Give them responsibilities.
Once my brothers and I got involved, church was alive to us. Look for hidden talents they can share, or jobs (like handing out bulletins) that give them a sense of belonging.
3. Get them involved in activities.
Extra activities like Youth group, Family Fun Nights, and church camp give kids an opportunity to get to know members on a personal level. I’m not just talking about other kids here. Some of the best connections I’ve made are with the elderly people in church.
4. Lead by example.
There’s never a day that my dad doesn’t wake up early to read his Bible before work, or that my mom doesn’t study her Bible before going to bed. We’ve seen Christ alive in our home, which has had an enormous impact on my life.
Enter to Win a Copy of Busy Books!
About Busy Books
Busy Books are designed to get the kids interested in listening and learning from the sermon at their own level. They provide children with a fun and exciting way to learn, take notes, and ask questions. A weekly point system makes learning fun, while encouraging children to come prepared and be prepared to listen.
In this book kids will find:
- A section for sermon notes
- A Sunday morning checklist
- A keyword checklist
- A place to write their favorite song
- A section for questions they might have
- An area for prayer requests
- A spot for extra notes or doodles
The book is complete with three pages per week for 52 weeks. All you have to do is pack a pen and a gold star!
About Madison Schacht
At 18-years-old, she’s already published, Busy Books for Kids, which is the first one of many that God has laid on her heart. With a love for Jesus and passion for music, she ministers on the worship team at her church.