"For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."
Every family has at least two kinds of treasures. One is money and another is time. During the forty days of Lent from Ash Wednesday to Easter, take the time each day to share regular family devotions with your children. That will be "valuable" time. Also, plan a special family offering with them.
There is a tradition during the forty days of Lent for Christians to "give up" something. Families have chosen a wide variety of things: from television viewing (a time commitment) to chocolate (a money and health commitment). A distraction is set intentionally aside so that one's attention is on our relationship with Christ. Money is set aside for a purpose that brings higher satisfaction.
For instance, your family may choose to do without a weekly visit to a fast food restaurant. A simple meal at home can become a special meal. Have each member of the family participate in some way. Talk together about the amount of money that was saved by eating the simple meal at home. Then place the savings in a jar or other container. Plan a brief, age-appropriate devotional that connects the simple meal to the Lenten theme. On Easter Sunday, this money becomes a special family offering. If your church designates a special Easter offering, talk together about what the money will do specifically for others.
Other things to "sacrifice" could include weekly trips to the zoo or ice cream parlor, an hour of television or video games each day, or a Saturday movie outing or video rental. Working together toward a common goal and spending time together in God1s presence will far outweigh anything your family chooses to "give up" during Lent.
Questions for Discussion
- How does giving up something help us draw closer to God? How does giving up become gaining?
- Jesus often ate with people. What do suppose they talked about when they ate together?
- Why do we prepare for Easter and why is it so important to us?