Our family life quickly forms patterns for ourselves and expectations of those around us which are difficult to change later in life. God teaches us to be especially concerned with whether our family relationships portray the truth concerning our spiritual relationship to Him. When family relationships become mirror images of our spiritual relationship to God, our family and every person connected to it benefits. Consider three of the principles God provides concerning the family:
Serve each other (Eph. 5:21ff). Willing servitude to those in our family motivated by our relationship with God is one of the pillars of God’s design for the family. Wives who follow the loving leadership of their husbands create a mirror image of Christ and the church for their children to see and grow to understand and appreciate. Children who obey compassionate and caring parents will find that they themselves are served well by the very instructions being given to them.
Give clear instruction (Eph. 6:1ff). Children who have rules, expectations, and consequences clearly communicated and maintained will find greater peace in life than those whose homes are filled with confusion and chaos. Parents who give clear instruction place their children in the advantageous position of understanding what they must do to please their father and mother. Through this type of relationship with their physical parents they will more easily understand the necessity of following their Heavenly Father’s commands to be pleasing in His sight as well.
Show Compassion (Mk. 7:9-13; 1 Tim. 5:4, 8). Parents who sow seeds of compassion in their children by genuinely caring about others ought to reap the harvest of their children’s care for them in their later years. A child who cares for their aged mother or father is doing what is pleasing in the sight of God and is displaying a Christ like spirit to those who are looking on.
By making these principles part of the foundation of your family life you will set habits in motion which will guide your family closer to God. Make godliness the goal of everything you do together!