- File Size: 406 KB
- Print Length: 100 pages
- Publisher: Christian Focus Publications (June 30, 2013)
- Publication Date: June 30, 2013
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00DQBO290
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
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#769,394 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
- #781 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Religion & Spirituality > Christian Books & Bibles > Christian Living > Dating & Relationships
- #2151 in Books > Christian Books & Bibles > Christian Living > Dating & Relationships
- #3938 in Kindle Store > Kindle Short Reads > Two hours or more (65-100 pages) > Religion & Spirituality
Neglected Grace Kindle Edition
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What this book does is give you vision to keep God and his Gospel a focal point of the life of your family. The book is very insightful, practical and faith building.
The book is appropriately named because family worship has been neglected in our day and it is a grace from God to benefit us and our families.
I encourage all parents to read this book, but I encourage dads specifically to read this and ask The Lord how He wants them to lead through this in their homes.
I found this book convicting and recommend it.
What will it take to bring revival to a nation? We have seen reformations, awakenings and revivals spurred from many places and figures. In taverns, chapels or colleges, under haystacks or in tents — movements can be born anywhere. Could it be that the next revival will take place in the comfort of families’ homes?
There was a time when families met weekly or daily to sing, pray and study God’s Word. Family worship was common practice in the seventeenth and nineteenth century. However, this practice has fallen on hard times. Today’s Church frantically needs this practice revived.
Jason Helopoulos, Assistant Pastor of University Reformed Church in East Lansing Michigan, retrieves the forgotten practice of family worship in A Neglected Grace: Family Worship in the Christian Home.
This book provides an intelligent argument built on Scripture, tradition and practical reason for Family Worship. A Neglected Grace equips. It is not an ethereal, academic thesis. It is a guide geared to assist parents in bringing worship to the home.
Helopoulos engages in an intelligent retrieval process. He explains the three spheres of worship: secret, corporate, and family (Chapter 1). Since the focus of A Neglected Grace is family worship, he conveys that it is our joyful responsibility (Chapter 2). Then he provides nine coherent arguments for family worship (Chapter 3).
His argument is scripturally grounded. In this process, he points us to scriptures such as Genesis 18:19, Deuteronomy 6:6-7, Joshua 24.15, Psalm 78 and Ephesians 6:4. Helopoulos discusses each text with careful exposition.
He reminds us of our historic Christian legacy. He emphasizes the example of Richard Baxter who encouraged the people of Kidderminster to practice family worship. Helopoulos directs us to Edward’s aphorism, “Every Christian family ought to be as it were a little church.” He humbly places a letter of John Knox before our eyes. This letter emphasizes how fathers are shepherds of their home.
Helopoulos writes, “If a father is in the home, he must see himself as the pastor of this little congregation. He is to be the resident theologian of his home and is to serve as the pastor of the home, ministering to his wife and children.” (37)
If you are a father or mother, you by now feel the weightiness of this neglected practice. How many homes can honestly say they are a little church?
Is it tenable to argue that we should still practice family worship? Aren’t these different times? Cottage industries do not exist. Children are not all day apprenticed with their father. The industrial era changed everything.
Now we live in a digital era. Media and always-accessible work jockey for our time. Is it reasonable to press family worship upon our homes? Families don’t have time to eat dinner together let alone worship together.
I adamantly say yes. Our society must adjust its priorities and make room for families to be together. I wish Helopoulos responded to these considerations in A Neglected Grace. The pastor who propagates family worship will experience immediate push back.
Outsourcing spiritual formation to professionals in the Church may be one of the reasons for Millennial exodus. The solution is spiritual formation in the home.
Thus, family worship if practiced widespread, could very well usher in an awakening for this generation of the Church. As Helopoulos says, “Worship is our communing with the one true and living God. Or, better stated, His communing with us. In that communing, the primary thing that happens is our meeting with Him.” (52)
In our meeting with God, families open themselves for revival and awakening just like college students did in their prayer meetings under haystacks or others did in their tents in the wilderness.
Parents, I urge you to read this book. I urge you to practice family worship. Family worship matures you spiritually. It will turn your children to you for guidance, intimacy and accountability.
Exceedingly Practical Equipping
Even if you’re convinced as I am that family worship should hold an integral place in spiritual formation, how do you go about it? Helopoulos does not leave us high and dry.
He includes four helpful chapters that equip. He explains that worship includes singing songs, prayer, reading and studying scripture (Chapter 4). Then he broaches the posture at which we approach worship (Chapter 5) and what is not worship (Chapter 6). Then he provides helpful tips to consider in planning family worship (Chapter 7).
I appreciate his sensitivity to children’s age. He reminds parents to be reasonable in their expectations. Patience is required for small children. He interlaces tips on how to engage little ones in the family worship process.
Helopoulos’s experience growing up in a single parent home heightens his sensitivity to special conditions. This does him credit. What if the home is led by a single mother? What if only one parent follows Christ? These and other circumstances are considered in Chapter 8.
The bar is not set too high. Helopoulos does not want parents to go from 0-100 in 2.0 seconds. He encourages parents to take small steps in developing a family worship routine. He builds in space for grace. For example, when discussing failure in consistency, he remarks, “…remember that it is a means of grace, not a burden to bear, so just pick it back up and start again.” (71)
I got a lot out of his chapter on what not to do in family worship. I was surprised by how easily wrong methods or motives creep into family worship. I found myself repenting throughout this chapter.
Urged to Adopt
A Neglected Grace closes with examples and testimonials from families and individuals who benefit from family worship. These closing depictions of the fruit reaped from family worship will urge you to adopt this practice.
The appendices offer multiple formats, structures and primers for adopting family worship. Taking advantage of these resources will make the process remarkably painless.
To sum up, A Neglected Grace urges adoption of an exceedingly practical and indispensable discipline into your home. Helopoulos reasonably puts forth a compelling argument for family worship that we ought to heed.