There is a culture war over how we lead our families, and it’s a vital dig in to really understand it. I was thinking about this while looking around my team during one of our recent meetings. We were discussing the importance of how we should take our knowledge and love for The Lord and give it first place in our homes. But that can be a huge challenge for some of us!
This week on the Chris LoCurto show, Joel Fortner (VP of Leadership Development) and I discuss what it’s like to lead a family well during this strange season in history.
On the podcast you’ll hear us discuss:
– Choices and consequences with children
– Teaching children to make wise choices
– Victim mentality and its effect on a family
– Priorities within our relationship circles
– Creating the culture you want in your home
Today, Joel and I discuss what it is like to raise a family in this day and age. One thing we can all agree on is that culture is changing rapidly! Parents are finding themselves raising a family in a difficult time for our children. We want to take care of them and want to discipline them well, but culture forces us in ways that we may not agree with. So, let’s get started on somethings that you may want to look at first when we talk about our culture in regards to our family.
It sells well, doesn’t it? We’re constantly seeking affirmation, validation and to be known really well. It seems as though today, the only way to grow is to become a victim. We have to be the ones that terrible things happen to. A pretty well-known thought leader, who has a decent following said that “The first way you need to love the world is loving yourself and being in love with who you are”. It sells well, but it can ruin our whole mentality when we focus on ourselves alone. As for believers, this is far from what the gospel has directed us to do. We are called to shift our focus away from ourselves and towards loving others because we love The Lord.
This is one of the first things we talk to people about in their Next-Level Life- how to prioritize your relationships in a way that will lead you to peace and rest. It starts with loving God first. Without loving Him, we cannot love others well at all. We have been grafted into His story and we are apart of His plan to bring His Kingdom down to earth. So, we have to go to love Him first. He has to be the first before anyone and anything. In Ephesians, God lays out what the relationships look like and it is our job to be obedient so we can honor Him in our relationships. Second is our spouse. Now, folks, I know how difficult this is in our culture. We will do anything for our kids, but I am telling you- your children need you to love your spouse before you love them. I cannot tell you how many people I see failing in this area! They are giving so much to their children and forgetting about their spouse. When you love your spouse, you work on that routine to be a team and to build your family together. My encouragement to you is to bring a focus on your relationship with your spouse. Your spouse is the most important human being in the world for you. When you are a team, you learn from each other and invest in one another to become one. Men, let me talk to you for a second. You are called to be the spiritual leader in your family. It is your job to make sure your family has a phenomenal relationship with God. Because once again, there’s going to be a time when those kids leave, are you going to prepare them and raise them up in the ways of the Lord so that when they do leave it doesn’t depart or are you going to hope for the best and you know, send them on their way? And I’ll tell you that the blessings, the reward, the feeling that’s coming with that of knowing our obedience is climbing as the leader of the home, there is a satisfaction and a fulfillment of that, of coming from a place of pleasing the Lord and being obedient to him.
Core Values in the Family
In your family, just like your business, you have got to sit down with your family and decide what you are going to value the most. Imagine how wonderful it will be for your family if you are all on board for what you are living for! Ask yourself: What do we want to value the most in your family? Are you going to be placing God in your life for your family? It might be counter-cultural when you come up with the core values, but if God is your number one Core Value, the rest won’t hold you down! Is God truly number one for you or are you struggling with this? In our business even, we have seen such wonderful things come from us discussing what our core values are and it will benefit your family! They need this from you. Are there areas that you are valuing a little too much and neglecting the things that really matter to you?
Following that up, we can hit on the decision making in your life.
Are you making decisions in the best way you can, right now? How do finances look currently? Are your children in a ton of sports and your family can’t seem to have dinner together for months? Your decision making has to follow up with your Core Values! If God is not your core value and you really want Him to be, there may be things your family has to decide on not doing or taking part in. This might be hard for our children, but folks, they need discipline now more than ever! Leading them is something we are called to do. It’s perfectly fine to say “No” to your child. If they decide to make a decision you have been pressing into them about not making, you have to follow up! We have to remember there is a consequence (good or bad) for everything we do!