The erosion of family values and family relationships is a source of deep concern. Two basic beliefs characterize Christians. (1) God is the origin of the family. (2) Godly relationships are the foundation of a successful family.

Too many men marrying do not know how to be a husband. They did not witness Dad successfully interacting with Mom on a year-by-year basis. Too many women marrying do not know how to be a wife. They did not witness Mom successfully interacting with Dad on a year-by-year basis.

Family interaction is rare. In a typical week, hectic individual schedules mean that the whole family is seldom together. Years ago the national average for an entire family eating a meal together was once a week. Car travel used to be a "natural" for family interaction. Seldom does a family travel in one car today. When it does, often head phones replace talking. In many families, disagreements replaced communication, and verbal abusiveness replaced disagreements.

Those are not intended to be "doom and gloom" statements. I intend them as evidence for a single point: too many families do not know how to function as a family.

A congregation is to function as God's family. Commonly, our sense of family is lost as we exist in "the real world." To the degree we suffer that loss, we face major struggles as we attempt to be God's family. We can function as God's family. But, that will happen through determined godly relationships, not by accidental occurrence.

One of our commendable practices is "the family meeting." The elders seek to have a "family meeting" at least once a quarter. In this meeting, the elders seek discussion and input. Men and women may ask questions and share insights.

Much of this Sunday evening will be devoted to a "family meeting." One discussion will focus on the development of a ministry to be a companion to our care groups. This ministry's objective is to nurture and develop members spiritually. The need exists. Do we wish to address it? Your input will assist in evaluating a possible role for this ministry in our West-Ark family.

As a healthy family of God, we must function together for the good of the individual and the whole. The family needs you. The elders want your input. Please come!

David Chadwell

West-Ark Church of Christ, Fort Smith, AR
Bulletin Article, 22 August 1999

 Link to next article

 Link to other Writings of David Chadwell