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What Are Some Practical Ways My Family Can Have Healthier Rhythms?

Many families look for an opportunity to simply hit pause and make changes to the pace or direction of their lives. Among the many changes that a pandemic brought to families, one potentially good shift came as an opportunity for us as families to evaluate our schedules and priorities. So often we as parents can feel overwhelmed by our growing commitments that leave little time for faith-building time as a family. On top of that, most of us did not grow up in households with regular rhythms that turned our hearts toward God so we can feel that we are not equipped to begin those things in our home. All of this leads to many parents carrying around the guilt that we are not doing enough to prepare them for the world they are stepping into one day as adults. The reality is if we want to prepare our children for the kind of life of faith we want for them, then we must start living out that life together now while they are in our homes.

There are some important things we need to remember about creating and carrying out healthy rhythms. First, we should recognize the impact that our habits have on our children. In many cases, we become like our habits and our kids become like us. That is why we must set up godly rhythms and habits in our home. While your kids will look back and remember many of those big moments you shared together as families, it is the steady rhythms of daily life that most shape their hearts over time. Secondly, rhythms are only rhythms when they come with some consistency. Life is certainly too unpredictable for us to have flawless rhythms, however, the key to adjusting for surprises is often as simple as counting on them happening. That is why it will be important to get ahead of things by planning with your priorities. Finally, and this is a big one, you must stay rooted in the gospel to keep up godly rhythms in the home. No one will hold your family accountable for not discussing scripture, praying, or engaging in any number of faith practices. It is up to you to begin and continue in these rhythms while knowing God’s grace carries you all along the way.

If you are convinced changes are needed but don’t know where to begin, we want to help you with a few ideas.

1. Family Meeting Time – You don’t necessarily have to call it a meeting, but have a weekly time where you sit down to look at the coming week or weeks ahead together. This helps you get organized, but more importantly, it gives you time to set aside time to prioritize your schedule by scheduling your priorities. Be sure to look for more tips on family planning meetings on another resource page that we are providing for you.

2. Meal Time – Gathering around the table as a family can often be challenging for overly committed families, but reserving time around the table as often as possible each week can be invaluable when it nourishes not only the body but the soul. This can be reflected by dinner games, sharing highs and lows, or leading meaningful conversations that point the hearts of your family to Christ.

3. Prayer Time – This one is simple but powerful. Gather your family for prayer each day before you part ways for school and work. Pray for kids together or individually considering what is happening that day, using Scripture, or simply expressing your heart for them before God. 

4. Scripture Time – It is true that faith conversations can happen all throughout your week and some of the best moments are those you don’t necessarily plan for as a family. However, the intentionality of setting aside time to spiritually lead your family through a devoted time in God’s word or a family devotional can be powerfully used by God. Remember your job here is not to preach a sermon or be an amazing bible teacher. You are not replicating the church but complementing it with a far more personal touch in the lives of your teenagers and children. The key here is not necessarily the quality of every discussion, but the consistency and heart demonstrated. Let your family see your love for Jesus not just in what you share but how you share it. If you need suggestions on resources for this time, we would love to share more of them with you.

You can begin any or all of these rhythms today. Start simple and trust God to lead you as you lead your family where it matters most.