If you’re anything like me, you understand all the positives and negatives that come with life in the digital world. On one hand, it’s amazing to think of the technology that comes so naturally to our children. On the other, there are times when it seems as if the art of true connection is slowly fading away.
Think about it. Our kids are growing up in a world where emojis, live video, and expiring photos are normal for connection and community. Written words are punctuated with pictures and listening well doesn’t matter because replay is a way of life. It sounds a little scary, but we’re taking help from family audiobooks to help us connect in a new way.
*I received a free Adventures in Odyssey: Up in the Air CD and was compensated for my time writing this post*
Don’t get me wrong, I’m grateful for technology and I’m not on an anti-technology soapbox. We enjoy our devices and use them for homeschooling, work, and fun, but, like everything in life, balance goes a long way.
It can be hard to find that balance and put down our devices after we’ve had a full day of homeschooling. That’s also true when we’re in our car traveling long distances or simply running errands. It’s almost second nature now to turn to apps and games to fill our still moments or provide moments of downtime.
It’s second nature to let devices fill our still moments & provide moments of downtime.
Even so, we’re doing our best to focus more on connecting as a family and doing so without devices in hand. That’s where Focus on the Family’s latest Adventures in Odyssey CD comes into the picture.
We’ve listened to our share of audiobooks and Adventures in Odyssey episodes off and on throughout the years, but not so much as a family listening together. So, while we were familiar with audiobooks and Adventures in Odyssey, the concept of family audiobooks was new to us.
Ditching the Devices & Connecting with Family Audiobooks
We’ve been listening to Adventures in Odyssey #63, Up in the Air, recently and I’m excited to share what I’ve noticed with you.
For the family
In a lot of cases, the family-friendly label is used to deem something to be appropriate for children. That’s fine if we’re heading to a new restaurant, but it usually translates to “for kids only” when it comes to entertainment.
In some ways that’s helpful because I like knowing that our viewing or listening choices are written with kids in mind. On that same note, that doesn’t always mean those choices are engaging for parents or teens.
That’s why family audiobooks like Up in the Air are different. These are more than family-friendly; they’re for the family because the characters and situations in the stories are relatable to kids, teens, and parents alike. That makes it easy to connect as a family while listening because no one is left out.
The concept of moral relativism seems to run rampant in our society these days. Meaning, what’s right for one person isn’t necessarily right for the next person. It’s not easy to raise our kids to be decent human beings, much less to be godly men and women, when there’s no call for clear standards for ethics and behavior.
This is why it’s so helpful to ditch the devices and spend time together each day. When we truly connect with our children and our spouses, we lead by example instead of hoping our kids will build character somewhere along the way before they approach adulthood.
We must lead by example instead of hoping our kids will somehow develop character. #ihsnet
This moral relativism is also why our entertainment choices matter. Let’s face it, there’s not exactly an abundance of entertainment options that celebrate the kind of people we want our children to be. That’s why family audiobooks can be so much more than something to pass the time.
When I say that family audiobooks can be more than something to pass the time, I’m not kidding. In the Adventures in Odyssey episodes from our Up in the Air CD alone, we listened to the following character-building stories:
- Find a Penny, a story about finding what was lost
- Friend or Foe, a story about true friendship
- Have a Heart, a story about God changing hearts
- B-TV: Revenge, a story about revenge
- Crash Course, a story about facing your problems
The great thing about these stories is that they’re serious at times, funny at others, but always engaging. That’s what makes these family audiobooks so helpful for building good character in our kids, connecting them to Bible truths, and reminding adults of these lessons at the same time.
Adventures in Odyssey: Up in the Air Giveaway
You can probably see why we’re happy to put our devices aside and turn on our audio adventures instead, but I hope you’ll check them out for yourself. You can learn more at Tyndale.com and even listen to an audio preview of Up in the Air while you’re there.
What’s better is that our friends at Focus On The Family are giving away 30 Up in the Air CDs. How cool is that?!? So, if you’re a US resident and feeling extra lucky, go ahead and enter so you can enjoy these family audiobooks with your crew.