The Blessings Of A Christian Home

The Blessings Of A Christian Home

Richard L. Sale, Ph.D., at the University of North Texas Center For Parent Education, identifies these characteristics of a healthy family: Commitment, time together, communication, appreciation, spirituality, and coping skills.  God wants your family to be supportive and strong even more than you do, and he has the plan and power for producing healthy families in his Word.  Let’s briefly look at Dr. Sale’s six characteristics of healthy families and how God provides these blessings to families in his Word.

Commitment. It is important that the family comes first over those outside of the family. Rather than letting outside activities take prominence over the family, healthy families select activities that promote the family as being important and help the family to grow closer.  Isn’t that exactly what God says in Romans 12:10?“Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves.” Through the committed love we have in Jesus we have power to put each other first.

Time Together. Healthy families are ones that spend time together at meals, at play, at work around the home, and in celebrating important holidays and life events.  In Acts 2:46,47 we read that the believers, “broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people.”  The simple joy of being together, united by faith in Christ and love from Christ, is characteristic not only of church families but also blood families who are united in Christ and his love.

Communication. Healthy families are willing to listen to each other in mutual respect, to confess sins and forgive others, and to let love- not raw emotions- dictate what is said.  What powers such communication is the gospel’s communication of God’s love and mercy toward us, which “turns the hearts of the fathers to their children” (Luke 1:17) and moves us be willing to “be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry.” (James 1:19)

Appreciation. Healthy families live out their God-given roles in love and respect, and appreciate what each member of the family contributes to the family. Isn’t that what Paul is saying faith moves us to do in Ephesians 6:1-4?  “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. ‘Honor your father and mother’– which is the first commandment with a promise– ‘that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.’  Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.”

Spirituality.  While this is understood to be any kind of faith-life, we Christians understand that there are unique blessings for families whose foundation is the one true God and Savior revealed in Jesus Christ. Moses therefore urged God’s people: “What other nation is so great as to have their gods near them the way the LORD our God is near us whenever we pray to him? And what other nation is so great as to have such righteous decrees and laws as this body of laws I am setting before you today? Remember the day you stood before the LORD your God at Horeb, when he said to me, “Assemble the people before me to hear my words so that they may learn to revere me as long as they live in the land and may teach them to their children.” (Deuteronomy 4:7-8;10)

Coping Skills. Healthy families are able to deal with crisis situations and address their problems in healthy ways. Christian families know that the source of true guidance, strength, hope, and comfort in times of trouble is the unfailing love and word of Jesus Christ. “All your sons will be taught by the LORD, and great will be your children’s peace.” (Isaiah 54:13)

God’s grace in Christ through baptism has brought us into the family of God where we enjoy all the blessings of divine love, forgiveness, and salvation every day.  Renewed in that grace through God’s word and the Lord’s Supper, our earthly families also will be greatly blessed, all to the glory of the God who alone provides such blessings!

Please know that your pastors are also willing to counsel you or guide you to Christian counselors that can help you when special assistance is needed!