If you’re certain your family is completely messed up, if you feel like you’re the most miserable sinner around, take comfort in knowing you’re not alone.
Families were first modeled in the image and likeness of the Trinity. We are called by our “perfect” creation to make our families reflect this profound relationship of life and love that exists between the three persons of the Trinity—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. In working toward this perfection, our family becomes a domestic church where God is worshiped and adored at the center of our lives.
Here are five easy ways to put it all together in your home.
- Eat, drink, and be merry together. By learning about one another’s interests and having mealtime conversations that keep everyone engaged, you build love and respect.
- Safeguard what enters your home. Aside from setting up parental controls and restrictions, regular conversation is key to strengthening your family’s moral compass. Discuss problematic entertainment and web content and lovingly explain what is and is not allowed in your house.
- Serve at home and beyond. Regular chores help children become more responsible and let them know they are vital components in making the home run efficiently.
- Model healthy relationships to your children. Love is modeled through images of God’s love for us, through loving and patient relationships with our children, and through physical expressions of love between spouses. Let your kids see you holding hands, hugging, and sneaking a few kisses. Plan regular date nights to stay connected to the love that existed before the children came.
- Pray as a family. Stay focused on the truth that as a family unit we are struggling to stay in a committed relationship with God every day. Pray together as often as you can. When some members of the family can’t join you, pray with anyone who is available.
Adapted from “Don’t Panic: When Will My Family Be Perfect?” by Greg and Jennifer Willits, in Family, the Church, and the Real World (Liguori Publications, © 2015. All rights reserved.). Liguori Publications’ Family, the Church, and the Real World received two 2016 Catholic Press Association Awards: 1st place, Popular Presentation of the Catholic Faith; and 3rd place, Family Life.