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If you really think about it not one member of a family is exempt of contributing to the family. Each member has their part in nurturing the family. Husband, wife, father, mother, son, daughter, brother, sister, each has an important impact on the home and on the family.
I love to look at nurturing this way. Think of a plant. Can you simply just place the plant on the shelf, ignore it until you desire to look at it's beauty? No, right! What must you do to help that plant grow and reach it's potential? Well, you have to make sure it is planted in fertile soil, you need to place it in a place where it will receive sun light, you will have to make sure that the climate is at a proper temperature for that plant, and you will need to give it constant care of watering, making sure you give not too much or too little, but just enough.
So, how can this analogy be likened to a family. A family consists of not just one person, but more than one. Families, like the plant, need to be nurtured and cared for in able to grow and reach their potential of happiness. It takes each member doing their part, making sure the family has a good foundation to grow in, a climate where the Holy Ghost will be able to be present to help strengthen the family in their efforts. The family needs to participate in the partaking of the light of Christ. We do this as we participate in family prayers, scripture study, gospel learning and Family Home Evenings. Going to church together is another great way to bask in the Savior's light. Then there is constant care and watering. We can do this as we seek to enjoy each other's company. Nothing good ever comes from focusing on the negative of others. Our families can be strengthened as we seek the good in each other. Finding things we enjoy about each other and making good memories as we do activities together.
I am the first to say, that my own family is far from perfect, far from reaching our potential. But, it is something we consistently work at. I think that is what our Heavenly Father desires, is for us to do our best at what He asks us to do. Just think how much growth their would be if each family member tried their best. That is what the goal is. But at times in our lives we need to put in a little more effort and patiently encourage the rest of the family to come along.
I love this quote that President Nelson gives, “The home is to be God’s laboratory of love and service.” A great idea is to sit down and write everything you LOVE about each member of your family, don't even think about the negative or the things that bug you. Just the good. Give that list to your family members. Then make another list of ways you can serve each of your family members. There is something about service, something about putting others before ones self. As we serve others we begin to have a deeper love for them. It is a win, win situation. This month encourage your sister's to make their list and provide some service and encourage their family members to do so also.
Sometimes it's fun to give our sisters something when we go and visit them! Here are some ideas:
The below tag can be attached to your favorite Air Freshener!
Want some great ideas of how to nurture your family together...
Hold Family Home Evening: There are tons of ideas on the web. Here are some of my favorites... LDS.org has several ideas on how to plan Family Home Evenings, We have over 300 ideas here on Life's Journey To Perfection, my friend at A Year of FHE also has several amazing ideas, you can also pick up a book like "Family Home Evening Favorites".
Play Games together: Do you have a favorite game your family enjoys playing together? Is is volleyball, kickball, or maybe a card or board game. My kids love playing a great game of Spoons, Speed, or UNO. I want to check out some of these faith centered games, have any of you played any?
Seek Wholesome Entertainment Together: Find something that your family enjoys doing together. For us it is camping, four-wheeling, fishing, watching movies and eating out! What does your family enjoy?
Make the Temple a Focus Together: Point out the temple whenever possible. Set goals together as a family of the temple. Have pictures of the temple throughout the house, here are some beautiful temple pictures. Let your children know when you are attending the temple and when they are old enough to go for them selves, bring them with you.
Eat Meals together: Even better, cook together. This is really something I need to work at, letting my kiddos help me in the kitchen. There are so many fun cookbooks out there!
I could go on and on.... The idea is just find ways to be together and help build those memories and relationships.
Here is the link to previous Visiting Teaching Posts.