Families today are too busy, doing many different things. They are busy with “being too busy” working out, going to church groups, extracurricular activities for the children etc. Everyone is busy doing different things and this reduces the time families get to actually spend together.
Families are operating like companies now with all the planning that it takes to manage schedules – mum drops off, dad picks up so mum can get to zumba class and on and on. All this time spent apart chasing different goals means that the families as a unit are getting less time to spend together.
Today is International Day of Families and the theme this year is “Families and Climate Action: Focus on SDG13” which largely focuses on improvement in the family, education, and well-being and their impact on society.
Why family rituals are important
Family rituals are very common in Jewish cultures. Family rituals are intentional ways to keep families close while giving children the roots that they need. We recommend that every family has its own set of rituals which encourages families to spend quality time together. It is only when families spend time together that values can be shared and bonding happens. A family is not close just by living under the same roof.
I listened to a message from Pastor Keith Battle and picked up four components that family rituals should have. Keep in mind that family rituals are really to give children roots. Children need two things roots and wings. Family rituals should include at least one of the components –
- Formation (developing the children)
- Faith – cannot leave God out of your family.
How you decide to include these different parts is up to your personal preferences and what works for your family. This time together connects the family members and gives roots that a child needs. When a child is disconnected from their family – the source, they are more likely to connect with bad influence from outside. Children must connect to something.
11 ways to create family Rituals
1. Eat a meal together
When you spend time talking that is when you know what is in the heart of a child. Some parents are unknowingly raising Cain’s who are jealous with bad intentions. Intentional parenting is the way to know what is going on inside your child’s heart and mind. Eating together is a good time for the family to come together and gist about their daily activities
2. Bedtime prayers
Spending time together at bedtime might include reading a book or talking about the day. It should include praying as these plants in the mind of the child from a young age that God is near and real keeping them safe through the night. There is nothing sweeter than a child talking to God before they get infected with the world or get schooled on thinking there is a specific way to talk to God.
3. Make Birthdays special
Make them feel special on their birthdays and have a special family celebration for this.
4. Sit of Honour
Have one chair in the middle of the room, choose one member of the family to seat on it and that person will hear every family member say one nice thing about the person on the seat. Everyone will get their turn seating on the chair. It is an amazing thing to hear what people who love tell you that they appreciate about you. This child will not look for validation from the outside when they are validated on the inside.
5. Movie night/pizza night
This lets you connect and spend time together in a fun way. Different members of the family get to pick a movie. This builds a special feeling that you can have fun together as a family.
6. Family vacations
Memories are formed when you go away and spend time together. Make sure these times are spent together.
7. Family devotions
Spend time on the word and talk about God together. This is a good time to keep it impactful and practical by getting every member of the family to share what God has done and testimonies.
8. Spend time together playing games or reading a book
Spending time like this together is a great way to relax and have fun together. Depending on the age you can either read to your children or if they are older you can decide to read a book and discuss.
9. Attend an entertainment event together
Go and watch a play or concert together etc. Share your experiences and lessons learnt after the event. This is a great way to rub minds and parents can use this as teachable moments.
11. Serve together in the community
Raising children with empathy starts from home, so find a cause and serve together.
Family time and rituals should be taken seriously by all for it to work, find a time or a day and stick to it. This includes every member of the family, when done properly everyone comes to look forward to it and it creates a unique bond that lasts through the years.
Family rituals provide a great way to bond and spend time together. It is something the whole family has to be intentional about. Do you have family rituals? What do you do together as a family? Share with us