This blog post is for all the moms of tween girls who are hoping to instill a habit of daily time with Jesus. I have two girls ages 9 and 11. I’ll be honest with you; most of the time I feel like I am barely pulling off this “mom” thing.
- We rarely eat a meal at the kitchen table. Usually we’re eating Taco Bell in the car or processed chicken nuggets on the couch while watching The Middle re-runs on the Hallmark channel.
- After I’ve asked my youngest to clean her room 50 times without a response I end up yelling at her and threatening to ground her from screen time for a month. #MomFail
- I put up job charts and forget about them.
- I read lots of parenting books and blogs and the concepts sound great, but usually my implementation falls flat.
- While I completely believe in the importance of consistent discipline, I don’t do it. Half the time I don’t discipline and half the time I’m overly strict. So I guess I am consistently 50/50. Does that count?
But there is one thing I think I have done a good job of and that is having a pretty consistent nightly devotional time with my girls. (And “pretty consistent” in my house is about 70% of the time. I call that a huge accomplishment!) I started with they were little and some months we’ve done it almost every night. Some stages of life I’ve been lazy and had my priorities out of whack and we’d go months without reading and praying before bed. But we always come back to it. My girls are the ones who usually remind me when I’ve fallen into bed exhausted.
Here are my top recommendations on devotional books for girls ages 7-12, in no particular order:
- The One Year Mother Daughter Devo by Dannah Gresh and Janet Mylin
- 3-Minute Devotions for Girls by Janice Hannah Thompson
- You’re God’s Girl by Wynter Pitts
- A Girl After God’s Own Heart Devotional by Elizabeth George
- The One Year Be-Tween You & God Devotions for Girls by Sandra Byrd
When my girls were a little younger sometimes I’d run across a topic that I thought was too mature, and we’d go to a different devotion, but most of them have been great for their ages. Some examples of topics:
- Happiness vs. Joy (A Girl After God’s Own Heart)
- How Do I Speak Love? (You’re God’s Girl)
- Me? Stuck up? (3-Minute Devotions for Girls)
- The Beatitudes: Peacemakers (The One Year Mother Daughter Devo)
- I’m Not Popular at School (Be-Tween You & God)
This devotional time has not only been a great opportunity to build a habit of daily time with God, but it has also opened up opportunities for discussion about what my girls are dealing with in their lives. And when it comes down to it, that is what is the most important thing to me: teaching my girls to be more like “Mary” by spending time on what matters most.
Even if they don’t always eat healthy, have messy rooms, and unfinished job charts . . . if they are spending daily time with Jesus everything else pales in comparison.