How To Enjoy Family Discipleship Time With Toddlers

A sneak peak into a daily family Bible time with 4 toddlers. Every Christian mom and dad can do it! Here’s how… and why it matters.

Can you really do family discipleship... with toddlers?

I know you want to help your kids follow Jesus.

There is busyness and chaos in a normal family day. Yet, at the core of everything going on, you want Jesus to be a priority!

But I also know that reading the Bible with your toddlers, teaching your squirmy little ones to sit still and pray, and figuring out what to do for family discipleship is really tough.

It’s tough – and it is possible! In fact, it’s not just possible, it’s valuable. 

While I will never say that my family does this perfectly, I can say that we are purposeful, consistent, and we have fun with family discipleship.  

So today, join me for a sneak peak into how we do family discipleship with our little ones – 4 kids ages 4 and under!

[This post may contain affiliate links. If a purchase is made, I may receive a small commission at no extra charge to you.] 

What is family discipleship?

No matter what age your children are, family discipleship will include many of the same elements.

  • Reading the Bible together and discussing it
  • Teaching, correcting, and disciplining your children
  • Singing to and worshipping God as a family
  • Praying (including confession, giving thanks, and asking for what you need)
  • Modeling and encouraging your children to join you in serving and helping others
  • Discussing and answering questions about life

Today, I’ll share a sneak peak into the more “formal” times of family discipleship with our toddlers. That usually includes Bible reading, singing, and praying.

But discipleship happens throughout the day! It is about sharing life together as Jesus followers. Just love your kids and talk about God with them. 

Family discipleship in the mornings

The morning time can be tough for families with toddlers, babies, and preschoolers. 

I can almost guarantee that you’re tired. And I can definitely guarantee that whether you’re tired or not, your kids have more energy than you!

For starters, it helps me be successful with a morning family Bible time if I’ve had my own devotional time to start the day.

Grab my FREE 45-day Bible and Prayer challenge to start building a habit for yourself

That way, once the kids get up, I’m already in a better headspace. I’m ready for the day… at least, sort of. 

And then, at breakfast, we have a family morning discipleship time with our 4 little ones.

A picture of our morning discipleship time with toddlers

In this season, we do a family discipleship time along with breakfast. It looks a little different depending on everyone’s emotions and energy levels (how do they have so much energy??!!) but we have a typical routine.

  • Eat breakfast, with a prayer at the beginning
  • After the kids are done eating, my husband immediately starts the Bible time… I’m usually heating up my coffee and finally sitting down!
  • We ask the kids some catechism questions from a book and review a few answers. They earn stickers for correct answers!
  • My husband reads from the One Year Bible book (it’s the real Bible, not a kids version)
  • We usually plug in some “act it out” or “repeat after me” or thematic emotional reading to keep them engaged
  • At the end, we sing a song and pray! Usually each child says a short prayer but this depends on their attention span

Grand total… probably 10-15 minutes. On a good day!

READ NEXT: 5 Great Scriptures To Pray For Your Family

Family discipleship in the evening

Most days, we do a family discipleship time in the mornings AND the evenings. In fact, our bedtime Bible time is more consistent than our morning discipleship time. 

Just like you might be tired for a morning devotional time, you’re probably also tired for a bedtime devotional time!

We want bedtime to be a time of peace and bonding. But some days, we’re just counting down the minutes until the chaos and noise will stop!

No matter how chaotic or stressful your day was, it’s worth taking a few minutes before bedtime to focus on family discipleship with your toddlers. 

READ NEXT: The Key To A Happy Christian Home: Speaking Encouraging Words For Your Family

A picture of our evening family discipleship time with toddlers

In the evening, my kids tend to get a little crazy. I know that’s not just my kids! But, they love to snuggle and they love to read – so that definitely helps us with our evening Bible time!

This is the routine we typically follow in our evening family discipleship time.

  • Everyone sits on the floor with mommy and daddy (often fighting over who is in whose lap…)
  • My husband reads a Bible story from their children’s Bible
  • They usually interrupt with questions… sometimes, they’re even relevant questions!
  • The children’s Bible includes small activities, so we do some of those. Some kids do, some kids don’t, that’s fine!
  • The 18-month old (our youngest) is just playing the whole time, but he loves his “Bye-Bull” and running around his siblings!
  • We definitely close with prayer at this discipleship time. My husband and I prompt each child for a specific type of prayer. Sometimes it’s long, usually it’s short – but it happens!

Grand total… 15-20 minutes. (Sometimes, though it’s great if we make it to 5 minutes!)

Some common themes of family discipleship with toddlers and preschoolers

There is nothing perfect about our morning and evening discipleship times with our kids. 

This time is powerful and important because of the God we are learning about and worshipping together – and because we are consistent!

Today, our 4-year-olds know a lot of Bible stories, several Bible verses, and they love reading the Bible and praying. I can’t ask for anything more! It is a great blessing. 

Family discipleship time with toddlers is chaotic. It’s loud. Usually, there is a mess. There are regular boo-boos, whines, and moments of discipline during the process. 

I love every minute of it. 

And I want that for you too, friend. 

My Easter Story Cards are a great starting point – you really can use them any time of year! They just walk through the gospel, with Jesus’ last days, death, and resurrection. 

And make sure that you have your OWN devotional time! My free Holy Habits: 45-Day Bible and Prayer Guide will get you started.

Listen to Episode #183

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Disclaimers: I am a licensed therapist but my podcast, blog, and resources are not professional or personal advice. I am an affiliate for many of the resources that I link to, and may earn a small commission if you purchase through my link. Read my full disclaimer here.