I don't think anyone would have imagined the year 2020 would have unfolded the way it did. As I write this, it is the beginning of May. We have already been socially distancing (a phrase that 2 months ago didn't exist) for over five weeks. Society has almost completely come to a standstill. Church, school, sports, many jobs, and extra-curricular activities have been halted. A large portion of us are at home. If you have children, whether intended or not, you have become home school families, Sunday school teachers and activity coordinators. The family unit has been reactivated like it has not been for a long time.
The fear is, the lessons that we have learned in the midst of this COVID 19 hiatus, will be lost. In our hurry to return to “normal”, we will get caught up in activity, busyness and the tyranny of the urgent. We will begin to, once again, download our responsibilities to others. We will get back to business as usual. Maybe we need to find a new, better and intentional norm.
Over the next little while we want to write some articles to help move us, from awareness of the need, to laying solid spiritual foundations in the lives of our children; to really spiritually investing in our families.
Deuteronomy 6:7 lays a significant framework for the new norm that should be at the core of home life. “Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.” I call them the “Core Four”. Even if life returns to some semblance of normalcy, these key pieces are essential in making our homes the center of spiritual life that they should be. If we couple this with effective partnership with the church, I believe God is going to do great things in our families.
THE CORE FOUR
MEAL TIME – When You Sit at a Home: Focused discussion as a teacher to establish core values.
DRIVE TIME – When you walk along the road: Informal dialogue as a friend to help your child interpret life.
BED TIME – When you lie down: Intimate conversation as a counselor to listen to the heart of your child.
MORNING TIME – When you get up: Encouraging words as a coach who gives a sense of value and instills purpose*
Circumstance has forced us to reactivate the family as God intended. Let's not loose momentum and switch back to a model that was stressful, busy and counter productive. Let's utilize the Core Four. Let's intentionally reactivate the family.
* From “Think Orange” by Reggie Joiner pg. 72