A home furnish with contented occupants where laughter and great memories are made is the foundation for whole adults. Grownups in a family unit needs comfort, security, and joy just as the children do. It was Frederick Douglas who said, “It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men.”
What makes a family whole and functional?
Let me make one thing clear; it is not money. Even in this twenty first century, a lot of us are still duped by the illusion that money buys happiness. It may—for a while. However, genuine joy and peace of mind requires much more than dollar signs on a bank statement.
Firstly, it is vital to note that functional homes have one common denominator…God. He is the mediator and confidant. Secondly, functional homes are not ones void of crying, anger, or sadness. Family members will occasionally get hurt. Discipline is also exercised and respected; this at times may lead to anger and even crying. The key is finding the right balance. Let’s be realistic, a family that is always happy and never has issues is not fully functional either.
Children who grow up in homes where parents never smile, is always angry, and only communicate by barking demands, will display those same traits. They may even carry it into adulthood. On the other hand, if every situation and the answer to every problem are masked with laughter and smiling faces, then those children will grow up in a fool’s paradise, ultimately missing out on critical life skills. “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. Honor your father and mother; this is the first commandment with a promise.” (Ephesians 6: 1-2) I agree, kids should listen and obey adults, but the adults also have to take responsibility in providing wholesome instructions for them to adhere to. Verse 4 continues by saying, “Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.”
A functional family strikes the right balance. It, like any functional relationship, requires trust, communication, respect, discipline, love, and strong morals and values. Sculpting God-fearing children is one way to build strong adults. Include God during meal times, bedtimes, morning routines, celebrations, and hardships. This familiar Bible verse serves as an excellent reminder for us all; “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.” (Proverbs 22:6)