Yesterday, to celebrate my birthday, we had a family day. Most of the family were able to get together and we did a host of simple things. The day started with an old family tradition in which the “birthday-ee” gets his or her presents in bed. After breakfast we went for a walk along the coast, then we had a picnic in the bracing air of a seaside town and in the afternoon I built Lego and some baked or read. In the evening we had a family meal, watched old super 8 family movies and finished off with a telephone call to an overseas family member and watching “Cool Runnings”.
It was a simple day. But the joy of having family together and enjoying each other’s presence was fantastic.
So I weep when I see families pulling each other apart or living in each other’s company with constant tension or anger. Families are intended to be places of refuge, comfort, support and encouragement. They are places where warm memories can be shared and enjoyed.
My constant plea with young couples is that they work together on the purpose of their family. Sure, there will be tensions and moments of anger, however, encourage each other with a picture of what the family can be and should be. If you are struggling, seek wise mentors – people whose marriage has blossomed in time and one you would like to emulate. Ask them for their secret for success.
Work at your family as a team. As I was reminded yesterday, it is such a precious treasure.