Thirty Days of Child-Training Boot Camp for Busy, Busy Mamas, Day 1: Our Job

30DaysBootCampDay1Are you ready? Today we start our child-training “boot camp”! We’re going straight to God’s Word, because that is where we’re going to find the real answers to the challenges we face as we seek to raise children who love and obey God.

I still remember the season when our first three children (all boys) were little and stretching my patience and “wisdom” (ha!) to their limits. God drove me into His Word and helped me see that the answers were all there. He hadn’t left us to wallow through parenting on our own. In His great love and grace, He was ready and willing to hold my hand and guide me through the great and often-scary-and-overwhelming adventure of motherhood.

My prayer is that you will experience that same delight and peace that God granted me, as we study together. I never “recovered” from those days of excitement! That’s when God finally got it through my head that His Word is a gift, and that it applies to my everyday life with all it ups and downs.

Today we’re going start our study by laying a bit of groundwork. What does God tell us to do for our children?

We’re going to dive right into using one of my favorite online Bible study sites, BlueLetterBible. You will need your computer, tablet, or smartphone to access the web. I will be giving instructions based on using BlueLetterBible’s website on my computer, with additional app instructions in parentheses. 

So let’s get started!

Assignment: Pray for God’s blessing as you start your study time today, and pray for all the other ladies who are studying along with you. The only way we will learn anything from the Bible is with the Holy Spirit’s guiding help.

  • Then go to (or install and open the Blue Letter Bible app.)

Do you see the words “Search the Bible” in the white section on the top, right-hand part of the page? (App users, this is a little trickier. Look in the blue lower menu bar, for the magnifying glass icon with “BLB” inside it, and click on it.) 

Type the words your children in the search box. (App users, type “your children.” Be sure to include the quotation marks.)

  • Then click the green button with the white magnifying glass in it. (App users, click “Go” to the right of the search box.) What you should see now is a list of every verse in the King James Bible that includes the words your children
  • Skim those verses. Don’t feel like you need to spend a lot of time on each verse. Look specifically for ones that give instructions to parents about their responsibilities. What are we told to do with or for our children? Note the reference of each relevant verse and summarize it in your notebook.
  • You will need to read the context of some of these verses that are listed to get their full meaning. Reading the verses that come before and after a particular verse helps us understand it better and also helps us not misinterpret its meaning.

To see the entire chapter that the verse is in, simply click on the verse’s reference. (App users, click the verse, then select “Read ___ in Quick view.) Then read enough of the surrounding verses to gain a better understanding of the passage.

  • After you have read the verse in context, click your browser’s back arrow. (App users, click “Close” above the text.) This will take you back to the original list of verses that contain the words your children.
  • Continue skimming verses and taking notes on the verses that instruct parents. Stop when you reach the blue bar labeled “Here are the remaining matches”. (App users, you don’t need to worry about this.) If you can’t finish reading all the verses today, you can finish up tomorrow. We will look more closely at the verses you have recorded then.
  • For today, look back over your notes. Take a yellow colored pencil or highlighter and mark in your notes every instruction that was given to parents in these verses.

What does God want to teach you through these verses? Note any ways the Holy Spirit is convicting you to change your thinking and actions.

For your children:

Several verses you read in your lesson today speak of the Israelites erecting memorials or observing specials feasts and ceremonies that commemorated God’s deliverance of His people.

Memorials help us teach our children about God’s faithfulness, and they build our faith as we recall what He has done, knowing that He will continue to do what is good for His children.

  • Choose one of those accounts, click on the verse reference to bring up the entire chapter, and read it aloud with your children. If they are old enough, take turns reading verses.
  • Discuss how God delivered the Israelites.
  • Then think together about ways that God has delivered your family or members of your family from danger, illness, financial need, etc.
  • Thank Him for His mercy and protection and discuss ways you could memorialize one of those events.

Would an annual family party or feast help you remember and give thanks to God for His deliverance?

Could you associate a particular song with His deliverance, and make a point of remembering and thanking God every time you hear that song?

Could you draw a picture or post a photograph that would help everyone remember and give thanks for His deliverance or provision?

30DaysBootCampDay1Part2Here’s a little picture I ran into the other day while cleaning out some old school notebooks. This used to have a picture of a van on the top of the mountain. God answered our prayers and provided the van that we prayed for. This week I put a little “Sold” sign on the top of the mountain, as we pray for God to send just the right people along to need and love and buy our house. As we remember how faithful God was to supply the van that our family needed, we know that He will be just as faithful in providing a buyer for our house. (See my Instagram post at “doorpostslady” for an update!)

Could you begin a scrapbook or journal full of accounts of God’s deliverance, adding to it as you witness God’s protection and deliverance?

  • Think of a way to memorialize at least one time God has delivered a member of your family or provided for you in some special way and work on your memorial together as a family.

NOTE: The rest of this study is available at, our new and improved Bible study community!

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  1. Loving getting back into another 30 day Bible study! God’s timing is always awesome! I have been praying over my girls for the past few months, asking the Lord to help me guide them through their youth and into adulthood. And just like the Great God that He is, He answers, first through a book called Child Training Tips by Reb Bradley (very good!!) and then through our new study! We have already started implementing the tips we’ve been reading from the book, and I’m excited to learn even more from our study!

    Now, back on topic – I found it interesting that the last 2 verses listed (Eph 6:4 and Col 3:21) both used the word ‘provoke’ – but they actually have different meanings if you look them up using the interlinear tool.

    Anyway – thanks again Pam!

    • Tiffany Johnsgard

      Same verse look up nurture kjv or training nkjv in strong’s concordance it really is very specific in its meaning. Great clarity in definition. 🙂

    • Long ago, I heard an excellent sermon series on love, in which the teacher spent a whole Sunday on “love is not easily provoked” from 1 Cor 13. While of course it means love (and therefore God) is not easily angered, it can also mean that love (God) is not MOVED in any whatsoever by our emotional outbursts, misbehavior, or attempts to manipulate. He just LOVES, unwavering.

  2. I think the Holy Spirit is showing me that I ought to be looking at my training/teaching the kids in a different way, one of these verses used the word diligent which means constant in effort, attentive and persistent in work. This means daily watching for times and way to share God and Christ’s story with the kids, teaching them the ways of His character-truth telling, sharing, showing kindness, acts of love. I’m excited for this study, it seems simple enough to be able to actually glean something from the Word and internalize it with the guide of the email. I’m excited to start this study!

    • Heidi,
      I agree that God is requiring more of us as parents. Consistency and with more intentionality!

    • Great perspective Heidi. Thanks for sharing that. What verse was it that you found that in?

  3. Thank you for putting this together! I have four little ones and my oldest turned 6 last week. I find that I often get overwhelmed very easy. I want to do more for my kids and I feel like most days I am surviving. Can any of you give me ideas of how you find time to read the Bible and your memorizing? I often go to the same verses with my children but I want so bad to give them more. Also, what ways to you find rest? Thank you for your time and resources, it means so much to me

    • Monique, I did Bible memory with the kids after breakfast, before leaving the table. We use a Charlotte Mason-based memory box system. The best description of the system I’ve found is at my littles were starting to memorize verses at 2.

    • God will meet you where you are–He gently leads those sheep who have young. You don’t have to have your Bible time at the same time every day. Just keep your things ready so that when you see a few minutes of relative quiet, you can grab them. Often, the children will want to join in, and the ideas Pam gives here are great! Being “behind” in these studies can actually be a blessing, because it allows you to print things off and gather supplies ahead of time.

  4. I am just seeing that God wants us in His word, telling of His miracles and taking care of this land that He gave us so that our children may have an inheritance of this “good land”. What a great reminder! Get into God’s word, tell His histories, and take care of what He gives us. And do it all with thanksgiving and for His glory.

  5. Charlesta Savage

    I have just learned about this and am excited! My life is so hectic,and its hard to take time for the important things. I want to raise my children to be faithful and strong Christians. I am praying the Lord gives me patience and endurance!

  6. I’ve noticed that in the NASB version, instead of it saying ‘your children’, many times it says ‘your sons’. Do you prefer the KJV version bible over others for this reason? Is ESV your personal preference for doing your own reading now over the NASB as in the past from your posts years ago?

  7. Is anyone else having a hard time understanding the reading? I couldn’t find one verse that sounded like something I was responsible for. The few I clicked through to see if reading more of it would help, didn’t.

    • My personal preference is the NLT or NIV. So I see what verse the blue letter bible shows the. I look it up in my NLT.
      The ones I found helpful:
      Deuteronomy 11:19-21 Teach your children. Talk about it. Write it.
      Deuteronomy 32:45-47 Pass the word on to your children
      1 chronicles 28:8 obey the commands of the Lord in order to bless your children
      2 chronicles 30:9 return to the Lord to bless your home and children
      Joel 1:3 Tell your Children about God.
      Ephesians 6:4 bring your children up with discipline and instruction that comes from the Lord
      Colossians 3:21 don’t discourage your children

      Hope that helps!

    • I’m there with you on this. I’m starting late and feeling discouraged because its not making sense.

    • Billie Y., perhaps try a few different translations. Sometimes that helps me. Be encouraged! Even if you are days and days behind, the study is not going anywhere. I actually prefer to start late, because it gives me the chance to take an evening or two to print things out and gather supplies Pam calls for, especially the things for the children. Hang in there; it will all begin to make sense.

  8. Arlene, I have moved more toward studying from the ESV, which is a word-for-word translation, like the NASB. I prefer the way the words flow better in ESV and find it easier to memorize than the NASB. My decision is not influenced in any way by the distinction between “your children” and “your sons”. 🙂

  9. Billy, look for verbs (if you’re into grammar at all). What are we being told to do? Look for words like “teach” and “command”.

  10. I love the idea of a family scrapbook! This way each member of the family can create something that is special to them and we have a way to display God’s goodness for visitors to our home!

    • Me too! What a great keepsake to have years down the road, to see blessings from each perspective!

  11. Thank you SOOO much for providing this devotional! God has laid it on my heart(through my pastor, recent events in the news, etc.) for several weeks now to start a family devotional plus start digging in the Word myself, but doing both(separately) seemed like such a daunting/time consuming task. The verses that stood out to me today really convicted me that I need to spend less time on things that don’t pertain to God, and take more serious my role in instructing my children in the fear of the Lord. Thank you for combining both the individual study and connecting it to a family devotional, this makes it so much easier for me. This is JUST what I needed! Thank you again so much!
    Can’t wait to start day 2!

  12. Pam, thanks for doing this study. It couldn’t have come at a better time! I’m a day late starting but love seeing the ideas that others are sharing, so that’s helpful! I didn’t even realize that there was also an involvement for the kids until I started today! 2 needs met in one! THANK YOU!

  13. I agree the KJV was hard for me to skim and understand, so I switched to NIV. I thought these instructions were directing us to use KJV, but is it better to use a version we’re comfortable with?

  14. Is this Child Training Boot Camp ever going to put into a print or ebook format? Did you run the same study last summer too? I really wanted to follow along, but sometimes it takes nearly 20 min to boot up my computer in the morning, and I’ve found that 30-45 min is an ideal morning quiet time (especially for accomplishing these busy mama studies)…but the kids like to wake up early (with the sun) in the summer, and the boys (age 2 and 4) don’t exactly wait patiently and quietly for me to finish. I love the format of you busy mama studies: the outline, thought-provoking questions, lists of words to find/highlight, etc…but I prefer less dependence on internet sources.

    • Natalie,

      This is a new study. Pam does a new study through the blog multiple time a year. Usually she goes through a section of Scripture that is studied for 30 days. This study is topical. I believe her studies eventually are in printed form that can be purchased through their store. However, it seems like it is usually a while after the studies have finished up before they are available in that format.

      I hope that help!