Strengthening the Family
Studies have shown that families who go on an outing once a week are more successful in raising balanced children.
Perhaps this is not surprising to you, but it surprised me. Honestly, our family had become so busy with so many individual activities that a family group outing had become fairly scarce, not counting Sabbath Day worship.
But the more I thought of what researchers had found, the more it made sense that a weekly family activity had such high impact. Even more surprising, the impact was highest upon teenagers. This again surprised me, because not yet having teenagers at the time, I’d assumed that no teenager wanted to be with their family – only instead with their friends.
The presenters at the conference from whom I heard these studies expressed how much depth they’d gone into regarding the research, especially in its bearing on teens.
And I thought how much this parallels what the Lord has spoken to us about families and their importance. In fact, guess what the Mormon prophets have consistently taught? A family togetherness time called Family Home Evening.
Within this weekly Family Home Evening (warmly called “FHE” by many), we set aside Monday nights to spend time as a family. The structure is determined by the parents, through prayer and introspection as to how best to bring love and closeness into the family.
Oftentimes the FHE will consist of lessons that include games that get everyone having a great time. But always FHE begins and ends with a prayer and a hymn, because these two things will bring the Lord’s spirit in powerful ways.
The importance of FHE cannot be overstated nor mentioned enough. Families who take the time to spend each Monday evening together will find greater strength in relationships over time (of course, some families need to adjust this to another consistent weekly time).
The power of togetherness is tremendous. It’s very similar to a garden. A farmer must plant seeds to have eventual food. Those seeds represent our children. One must then water those seeds and watch for weeds vigilantly. Otherwise, that which we’ve begun will fail.
“Watering” and “watching” must be done consistently for our children to grow up straight and tall before the Lord. Daily prayer and scripture study provides the weeding, but a weekly fun-fest as a family during Family Home Evening can bring much living water to strengthen our children’s growth throughout their lifetime. You’ll find many FHE ideas here at LDSBlogs.com under the various topics. Come back often to find fun ideas to strengthen you and your family!