What Do Parents Do All Day?

by Cara Martens

The American Time Use Survey asked thousands of Americans to recall every minute of a day and then they averaged the results. This survey found that sleeping, eating/drinking, working and watching TV take up about two-thirds of the average day. In the “People with two or more children” demographic, three more categories stood out as taking up significant portions of each day—household activities, traveling and family care (an additional half hour for each child). Not surprisingly, some of the smallest slivers of time spent were on personal care, socializing, relaxing and thinking, plus religious activities.

With so much already packed into families’ busy lives, how can we help parents use the time they are already spending with their children to create more of an everyday faith? It seems like the most likely way is to intentionally cue or prompt parents to use certain times of each day to further their children’s spiritual growth. To not just drive to practice, but talk about the Bible or listen to praise music on the way. To not just eat dinner, but to start a discussion about God and how He is working in their family. By cueing parents to use these key times they already have with their children, we are partnering with them and encouraging them to use their greater influence for their children’s spiritual growth.

We think parents want the best for their children. They want to raise kids that believe in God and see Him as active in their lives. We need to help CUE every parent to make the most of their everyday moments together instead of setting up an unrealistic model that makes them feel hopeless so they quit before they even begin or think that it’s too late.

What are the best tips or tricks that you’ve discovered along the way for setting parents up for spiritual conversations and learning at home?

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The Orange Group is a gathering of leaders who are passionate about engaging churches and families to influence the faith and character of the next generation. Contributors include some of the most widely respected thought-leaders in children’s ministry, including Reggie Joiner, Sue Miller, Kendra Fleming, Jim Wideman, and Bre Hallberg. New blog entries, podcasts, webcasts, and video downloads are available every week to help you keep leading yourself and growing with your team.