“Putting the ‘fun’ in dysfunction.”
That’s been a joke for years, but it’s not funny.
Family life doesn’t have to be dysfunctional.
Years ago, shortly after I became a committed believer in Christ, I heard a message preached that rocked my world. It was the kind of message that catches you completely off guard and leaves you undone by the presence of God, knowing you will never be the same.
I was so struck by the words in Malachi 2:15,
Has not the one God made you? You belong to him in body and spirit. And what does the one God seek? Godly offspring. So be on your guard, and do not be unfaithful to the wife of your youth.
Years of feminist training and dysfunction melted away.
My years of feminist training—to reject marriage and family as a less than noble pursuit compared to the ventures of making money or becoming famous—all melted away in that powerful encounter with God.
My pursuits completely changed from that point on. I was suddenly aware that this idea of family—being in God’s family and creating a godly family—was near and dear to God’s heart. Through a transformation, it became near to my heart, too. I didn’t know how to accomplish it, but I knew it was worth pursuing.
Throughout the last 50 years or more, our country lost the importance and foundation for family. Almost every problem we see today is a result of family problems and issues. Yet the more problems we have, the less focus or interest there is in family. People have become more self-absorbed, and as a result, we’ve been spiraling downward as a nation, as individuals, and as families.
It’s time to change things.
Love is the greatest thing one can experience, and love begins in a family.
We weren’t made to have a relationship with technology, or to be self-absorbed.
God made us for family—His family and the one we would create with Him.
I remember a time when we were in Taco Bell eating lunch as a family. We prayed over our food, ate, and talked. Afterward, a couple approached Gary and me. The lady had tears welling in her eyes.
“I’ve never seen a family like yours,” she said. “The whole meal my husband and I couldn’t do anything but watch your family. I’ve never seen kids get along with their parents like yours, or talk and get along with one another so well. What’s your secret?”
We had an opportunity to share God’s love with that woman. We didn’t have to go to her table and preach to her. Our family opened a door for us to witness simply by being ourselves.
People want good families, not dysfunction.
How sad that a functional family is an anomaly, a rarity!
The light shines brightest in the greatest darkness. We aren’t a perfect family, but we tried every day to cultivate an atmosphere of love and peace.
Don’t expect your family to be perfect either, but cultivate an atmosphere of love and peace.
Whether people realize it or not, they yearn for the vintage family model. That’s why family shows and shows with lots of kids and family life are so popular, because they give a glimpse into families that relate, that are real, and working through problems, not running from them.
Amidst so much dysfunction, people are craving healthy relationships.
It’s time to reinstate the principles of the vintage family; to protect the future of all children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren; to invade the culture that is trying to twist and dilute families; and to bring in the strongest, clearest form of the family system—the one that works.
Won’t you join me?
Excerpted and adapted from Drenda’s book, The New Vintage Family.