by Steve Watters
Once a month, I see Hershael York tweet about Bibles and Biscuits, a men’s fellowship at Buck Run Baptist Church and it makes me think of the similiar time my oldest son and I regularly look forward to. For a couple of years now, we’ve been heading out early for breakfast and Bible study every other Friday (my wife and daughter meet for breakfast on the Fridays we’re not meeting). If you don’t have a regular one-on-one discipleship time with your kids, I commend this format to you.
Here are some of the things we’ve come to value about the Bibles and biscuits approach to spiritual formation:
Routine: We value the standing commitment of regular one-on-one discipleship. In addition to the devotional time we have at home, we look forward to a set time that we can enjoy man-sized portions of eggs, biscuits and sausage along with man-sized conversations about eternal things. Most significantly, it’s now part of our routine to have a time where it’s natural to talk about weighty and sometimes uncomfortable things–an open door that might have been harder to pry open if I waited till later.
Focused time: We have four kids and lots of activity in our home and so it’s helpful to count on a routine time with limited distractions to focus on one child. It grows our relationship to have that dedicated face time and it gives us a venue to weigh in on topics that are too mature for my younger sons. This focused time also creates expectation for our other children who anticipate their opportunity for a similar routine in the future (currently I’m only taking them out for dessert and a study of Young Peacemakers every third week).
Formal and informal discipleship: Moses tells the Israelites in Deuteronomy 6:7 to teach their children diligently the words he’s giving them, and to talk about them as they sit in their house, walk along the way, when they lie down and when they rise. We see in that instruction a combination of formal and informal discipleship. And that’s what I see in our breakfast discipleship time. We typically work through a passage in the Bible or a book (here recently, we’ve worked through John 15, Romans 12, Genesis 1-3, and Philippians 4 as well as books such as Knowledge of the Holy by A.W. Tozer and Thoughts for Young Men by J.C. Ryle), but I’ve also found that getting out for breakfast also provides opportunities for “along the way” discipleship (as we interact with others around us, have conversations about questionable content on the TV screen nearby, or even just talk about our plans for the day ahead).
By no means am I recounting our breakfast devotional time to boast. I’m well aware of the ways I do this imperfectly and how much I could stand to learn from other dads. I have great gratitude, however, for the men who encouraged me to start this kind of discipleship routine and I pray this post will be a practical encouragement for you as you seek to be faithful in teaching and training your children. As we trust the Holy Spirit to illuminate the Word we share with our children in settings like these, it could be that our children will look back some day and cherish our equivalent of Bibles and biscuit time as God’s providential means for their spiritual nourishment.
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