When Does Family Ever Come First?
A very experienced nurse once shared her observation that one of the two most important things that many patients on their death bed are usually concerned about is family. This is so because at such a critical time when one has only a brief moment to remain in this world, one cannot afford to spend even a second worrying about mundane things. They want to see or touch most of their family members one last time and for as long as they can. They want to be surrounded by their own relatives, wishing they could buy a little more time. They would forgive long-held grudges in an instant, with tears flowing freely and an outburst of emotion. All of a sudden, they realise that they should have spent more time with family when they could. Family now comes first on their death bed. Unfortunately, it would be the last time!
A very busy man was once asked what his motivation for hard work was. He responded by saying that he needed to provide for his family. Because of that he was heavily consumed with work, hardly ever having time for the same family he was providing for.
Nothing can replace your family. It comes before whatever success you may hope to achieve. It is good to have a lot on your monthly planner and daily to-do list, but do you also have plans for your family on them? Do you have these things on your schedule: A weekend outing, taking your wife to the swimming pool, a bed-time story for your kids, calling on Grandma, your daughter’s birthday, family Bible study, dinner-for-all, family games, your son’s homework, and so on? Is your home like a playground or just an enclosure?
From God’s perspective, a thriving ministry or career with a weak family is absolute nonsense. I Timothy 5:8 (GNT) gives us a peek into the significance of families to God – “But if any do not take care of their relatives, especially the members of their own family, they have denied the faith and are worse than an unbeliever.” Yes! The family unit is very important to God, and we have a primary responsibility to build healthy and powerful homes. It is apparent that God strategically placed each believer in a family that will mold and shape them to help achieve His purposes. Ironically, our generation has given attention to every other thing but the family unit. Today, many are trying to “make it” at the expense of making their families.
When should family really come first? On the death bed or every day?
To be continued next week.