In the beginning, God created Adam and Eve and gave them the charge, “be fruitful and multiply” (Genesis 1:28). In doing this, God established the family—the very foundation of society and the church. The family is at the very center of God’s plan for happiness, spiritual development, and growth. Earthly families were created to represent the perfect unity and harmony seen in the heavenly family.
“The relationship existing in the pure family of God in heaven was to exist in the family of God on earth” (Ellen G. White, Testimonies to the Church, Volume 6, page 236).
However, when sin entered the world, God’s plan for the family was marred. Today, many families are broken or struggling to navigate togetherness in a broken world. Being united with Christ is the only way to restore the family to what God created it to be. As we give ourselves to Him, individually, and together, our love for one another will increase, we will put the needs of others above our own, and each member of our family will be fulfilled as, together, we experience a bond that cannot be broken.
As another year is now before us, and many of us are reflecting and making New Year’s resolutions, consider extending your resolutions into your family. A great way to do this is by coming up with an overarching theme that will set the tone for your family this year. Below are some examples to help you along:
FAMILY THEME IDEAS
As a family, decide to be consistent in one thing this year. This could be family worship at a regular time, reading the Bible together, or even sharing a special family meal at the same time every week.
Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord. 1 Corinthians 15:58
Together, decide to be more intentional about sharing your faith. You can choose to reach your neighbors this year, and participate in mission trips or other outreach activities.
Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven. Matthew 5:16
Encourage one another this year as you commit to sharing only uplifting words in your family circle and doing things that will edify and encourage one another.
Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers. Ephesians 4:29
Before making any major decisions, or when unsure of what to do, wait for God to answer and wait for His timing and direction.
Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and He shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord. Psalm 27:14
Determine that no matter what trials your family faces this year, you will trust and praise the LORD!
Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
Our Challenge for You
Before the year ends, prayerfully gather your family together, and choose a family theme that fits your situation best. Feel free to choose one of the examples above or come up with your own. Resolve that this year, 2023, will be the best your family has ever had! As you draw closer to Jesus and one another, you can be sure that you will experience the true heaven-on-earth experience God designed our families to have while being a powerful influence for good in the world.
by :: Anais Anderson
About the Author:
Anais Anderson is a stay-at-home mom in Harrah, Oklahoma. She enjoys writing professionally for different Adventist ministries, as well as personally. Anais is passionate about connecting people with Jesus and helping others understand how they can truly experience the abundant life Jesus promised in John 10:10. Anais and her husband, Daniel, have been married for ten years and have two young children, ages 3 and 6. As a family, they strive to emulate Christ's ideal by being intentional about connecting with Him and truly making Him the center of their lives.