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10. Family Time

source : www.winwellness.org

Are You Rich and Don’t Know It?

Family Time

 

 

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“Are you rich and don’t know it?”

Family Time

 

Ali Hafed was happy and wealthy. He lived near the banks of the Indus River in India on his large farm with his lovely wife and adoring children.

 

One day a friend visited Ali. As they sat by his fireplace, the friend mused about diamonds. He said that just one the size of the end of his finger could buy a dozen farms the size of Ali’s. With a handful of diamonds Ali might buy all the surrounding lands, but with a diamond mine, he could purchase kingdoms and set each of his children on thrones in their own palaces.

 

That night Ali could not sleep. Although already rich, he began considering himself poor. He had to have more. He had to have a diamond mine.

 

At dawn Ali Hafed went to his friend’s home and awakened him. “Where can I find diamonds?” he asked. “I must be rich enough to provide my children with kingdoms and thrones. Where can I find diamonds?”

 

The friend said, “You need to find a place where a river runs over white sands between high mountains. In those white sands you are likely to find diamonds.”

 

A few days later Ali Hafed sold his farm, put his wife and children in the care of a neighbor, took most of the money, and set out in search of diamonds.

 

Ali wandered through Asia and the Middle East. He traveled to Europe. In some places he saw rivers running between high mountains; in others he saw pure white sands. But to find them together eluded him. His money gone, dressed in rags, he journeyed intocame to Ssouthern Spain, just as a tidal wave swept through the Straits of Hercules (Gibraltar). Dejected, Ali threw himself into the tide and was drowned, not never having found a single diamond.

 

Meanwhile, back in India, the new owner of Ali’s property was giving his camel a drink in the stream. As the camel put his nose in the water, Ali Hafed’s successor observed a curious flash of light coming from the white sands of the stream between high mountains. He picked up a peculiar black stone, which had a strange spark of light as the sun hit it. Taking it inside, he put it on the mantle above the fireplace and forgot about it.

 

Sometime later, Ali’s old friend visited the home of the man who had purchased Ali’s farm. The instant he entered the home, he noticed a flash of light from the rock. Rushing to the mantle, he said, “Here is a diamond! Has Ali returned?”

 

The man replied, “I haven’t heard from Ali in years, and that’s just an old rock I found in the stream by the garden, not a diamond.” “No,” responded Ali’s old friend, “that is a diamond. I know one when I see it.” The two men rushed to the stream by the garden. Their fingers sifted through the pure white sand. They found more and more gems of surpassing splendor. They found acres of diamonds.

 

Thus was discovered the mine of Golconda, the richest mine the world had ever known up to that time. From that mine came the Koh-i-noor diamond and the Orlov diamond of the crown jewels of England and Russia.[1]

 

 

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Are you rich and don’t know it?

 

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Are you rich and don’t know it?

 

 

You have precious jewels right in your own home—in your own family. Happiness is not a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, to be chased futilely. Happiness is right where you are. If you have children, they need to be treasured, to be loved and appreciated, made to feel that they belong and are connected to a strong family. As you invest your time and energy in them, you increase in true wealth.

Jewels are being polished for God’s kingdom in your own home. Polishing takes time. Take time to polish them gently.

 

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Jewels are being polished for God’s kingdom right in your own home. Polishing takes time. Take time to polish them gently.

 

 

The Bible points out that in the beginning God created everything necessary for the happiness of this new world. On the sixth day, He created animals and humankind, and then asked Adam to name the animals. As Adam gave names to the bears, birds, and insects, he noticed they each had companions but he had none. He was alone, and he felt lonely. On the sixth day God met his needs by providing him with a companion and helper, his beautiful wife, Eve.[2] Adam and Eve fulfilled God’s command to be fruitful and multiply, and children became a heritage from the Lord.[3]

 

Ever since then, men, women and children in the progressive seasons of life have desired companionship. Developing companionship takes priority time. This was God’s plan. A vital part of that heritage is the time spent with our family, nurturing and helping each other to grow in wisdom and grace. God gave us the gift of time to use wisely, to do all we need to do for Him, for ourselves, and for others. Through the wise use of time, God makes it possible for you to be all that you can be.

 

Time is a man’s most precious possessionhis most precious commodity. To take a man’s time, is to take a portion of his life. To give a man some of your time, is to give him a portion of yours.”[4] You could not live another second without TIME.  You can’t afford to lose it, waste it, or run out of it. What is your most valued possession? What could you not live without for another second? There is one possession that you wouldn’t want to lose, waste, or run out of. That commodity is TIME.”[5] Time is precious.   It is a gift we enjoy daily and share with other.

 

This chapter discusses the use of time throughout the progressive stages of the family. The goal is to stimulate thoughts about how to get the most out of the precious gift of time God has given to you.

 

Contemporary life today

Dolores Curran reports, from a survey of 551 family professionals, that healthy families spend more time together and do not become overly involved in activities that take time away from the family.[6] They put a priority on play, humor, and family interaction.

 

A survey done in one community found that the number -one felt need of families was the need for—M more timeORE TIME! In today’s rushed society, parents run one way and children run another. We don’t have time to eat together as a family, so we eat separately at MacDonalds or Burger King. We don’t have time to play together at home, so we rely on professional performers to entertain us on electronic media.

 

All this “busy-ness” prompted one person to quip, “We don’t need a living room, or a dining room. We never use them. All we need is a filling station, a bed to sleep in, a closet to hang a few clothes in, and a garage big enough to park three cars in so we can all run in different directions!”

 

Where will we invest our time, for our “diamonds” of family riches? That will vary according to our stage of life and according to the structure of the family. Let’s begin with having time for self-care.

 

Self-c Care

You are a very important person, with one body and one life. Therefore, take time for self-care and learning. Don’t feel guilty spending time exercising, preparing a healthy diet, getting medical attention, reading a book, or being well-groomed and presentable. Even the birds take time to preen their feathers, bathe, and sun themselves. When they are healthy, they seem to sing more joyfully.

 

Mattie, who travelled professionally, had not taken time for necessary dental care. When finally visiting the dentist, Mattie realized she was in deep trouble. The dentist reprimanded her,. “You will have to decide on your priorities. You can continue to travel, lecture, rush from one place to another, or you can start a time-consuming procedure to save your teeth. At this time you can’t do both. You decide.” Her choice was to take care of her dental needs. In reality, keeping one’s personal world in order is essential for others and for ourselves.

 

Single Ttime   

 

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Single Ttime 

 

 

The single time of life is a great time. It is a time of giving and receiving, of deepening relationships with family members, church friends, and new acquaintances. It is a time to make life-long friends, to build memories, and to do good for others. It is a time for a young single person to pursue a career or get an education, thus learning and enriching life. It is a time for singles of all ages to stretch their minds in educational pursuits, learning how to live a fulfilled life and make right choices. The skills and habits formed during any season of life equip a person for their future. It is a time to prepare to be a terrific husband or wife or just a better friend.

 

In many Western countries single persons have become the majority. Factors involved in this demographic shift include: singles postponing marriage until an older age,; some people through choice or circumstances never marrying,; the elderly living longer after a mate dies,; and the divorced becoming single again.   

 

SinglesIf you are single, wherever you live in the world, take time to live well. Whether you are young or old, never married, divorced, or widowed, God has a plan for your life, a dream for you. Spend time identifying God’s dream and then follow it.

 

One single person said that she was able to stick her nose in many corners of the world, enriching and broadening her life, in ways that might not be affordable after marriage. Those who can’t afford to travel can enrich their lives wherever they live.

 

How to live a fulfilled life as a single.   

  1. Take time to have a growing spiritual experience and a dynamic prayer connection with the Father God of the universe.
  1. Take time to let your love shine through to others.
  1. Take time to learn about healthy lifestyle, healthy cooking, and following health rules.
  1. Keep physically active by following a daily exercise program either alone or with friends.
  1. Make deep friendships with those who will be there with you through difficult circumstances of life.
  1. Practice the positive character traits of adaptability, courtesy, and kindness.
  1. Have prayer partners, and enjoy growing together spiritually.
  1. Choose to be faithful to God and remain pure and prudent in all circumstances.
  1. Do good. Like Mother Teresa, throw yourself into some cause bigger than yourself.
  1. Take time to be a good steward of your income. Return the tithe to God, care for your immediate needs, save for emergencies and towards owning property if possible, and invest in others. God will bless you.
  1. Go to new places and enjoy meeting new people.
  1. Resist wasting time idolizing TV celebrities. Develop a creative, lifetime hobby to use your time instead.
  1. Make friends. Form a small group of single friends who get together monthly for special planned events. Each month, different individuals may plan the activities.
    1.  __ Work together on a mission project
    2.  __ Share Friday evening worships at unique places
    3.  __ Visit a historical site and have a special meal
    4.  __ EEnjoy God’s creation by visiting a local park, peaceful lake, gushing waterfall, or mountain to hike and photograph a special scenic view.

 

In whatever state of life you are in as a single, do the things that will bring joy to you and to others.   You can be like Mother Teresa on the streets of Calcutta, Mary Magdalene who let the fragrance of her alabaster box fill the house, or like Paul who traveled to minister to the needs of others.

 

Take time to care for yourself, your “one body” God has loaned to you. Choose a healthy lifestyle. Learn to prepare healthy foods that will provide the antioxidants and nutrition that you will need to keep your body strong, with an excellent immune system fighting for you. Enjoy life to the fullest!

 

Time for him &and her

 

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Time for Him and Her

 

 

A survey given in marriage seminars asked participants what their greatest needs were. Ranking first and second were “spiritual growth” and “time for two.” In another survey relating to time, wives indicated that they appreciated it when their husbands gave them one hour of their time scattered through the day for communication and companionship. This was a felt need.

 

There are many ways of saying “I love you.” One busy physician determined not to neglect his wife, because she was so precious to him. After making evening rounds to see his patients at the hospital, he tucked in his small children at home, then dedicated one hour to his wife for their “His and Her” priority time.

 

One wife wanted more priority time with her husband, so she kidnapped him for a weekend. She packed his suitcase with appropriate clothes, picked him up from work, and started driving north to places unknown to him. After arriving at a dock, they boarded a boat and crossed a body of water, where they were met by a horse and carriage and taken to the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island for one night—that was all she could afford. He was totally surprised. What great memories they made! Someone hearing the story said, “My! What a lot of money you must have spent.” The husband responded, “Do you know how much divorces cost?”

 

Mary gives a “His- and Her Day” coupon to her husband to cash in when he is ready to have a marriage enrichment day. Other couples take turns planning outings to some special place for an hour or two, all day, or for a weekend.

 

One couple keeps a file of places they would like to go for their priority couple time, doing things they have never done before. It can be a mini- or half -day vacation. This is another way of saying , “I love you,” spending time together like as you did when dating before marriage. On these fun days, remember to say, “I love you,” “I’m so thankful for you,” or “You are the best thing that ever happened to me.”

 

What fun activities do you and your spouse enjoy? Write down suggestions for a date night or recreational activities you both enjoy, and then do them one by one.

 

Activity 1 _________________________________ Date ____________

Activity 2 _________________________________ Date ____________

Activity 3 _________________________________ Date ____________

 

Planning is the secret to enhancing the love relationship between a husband and wife. It takes time, but it is worth the effort. What are some of your favorite “Time-for-Two” memories? There are great rewards when couples spend their companionship time studying the Scriptures, praying, and doing good things for others. Adam was lonely, and so God gave him a companion. Today, couples still need that companionship in their marriages.

 

Time for Cchildren

 

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Time for Children

 

 

Parents can also give their children surprise coupons for special planned activities like a one-day camping trip, canoeing down a winding river, shopping with mMom, or going to the ballgame with dDad.

 

A couple with a young adult son discovered they were expecting another child. This surprising news prompted the father to do serious reevaluation. He was thankful for his first son, but never developed a close relationship with him because of his business travels. During the boy’s younger years,  he had little time for his son. Now that the son was older, he didn’t have time for dadDad. The bottom line was that the dad had come to believe that he just wasn’t cut out for fatherhood.

 

As the date for of delivery came closer, the father resolved to do things differently this time. From the child’s earliest infancy, he held his son a lot, cooed to him, and played with him. As the son grew, a strong bond developed between him and his father. One day as he looked back, he told a friend, “Think how much I missed;, how many joys of fatherhood I deprived myself of.” Children are in the home for such a short time. Enjoy them and take time to train them to their fullest potential!

 

Reflect/Discuss

What family memories do you have of your childhood or as a parent?

 

Have you ever heard of anyone who regretted having spent too much time with their family? Family time is an investment that haswith eternal rewards. In contrast, Cchildren who are not properly guided often find their own ways of occupying their time. This alternative may be dangerous to their health and their future. Current research gives us insight on how they fill this vacuum.

 

Research on the family and use of electronic media

 

One research study found the average 12-to-24-year-old in the United States spends nine hours 17 seventeen minutes a day with electronic media. In order of most to least used, the technologies areThe time starting with the most used and progressing to the least used are: (1) Internet, (2) Ttelevision, (3) vVideo games, (4) Radioradio, and (5) Cell cell phone.[7] Over More than half of the waking hours of youth and young adults are spent with electronic media. To a great degree, people are being satisfied by seeing heroes oin the media instead of being heroes themselves, by watching sports instead of exercising. Someone said, “I’d rather make news than watch news!”

Studies done by Malach and colleagues found that when one is engaged in intense “sensorimotor processing” the prefrontal areas of the brain are inhibited.[8] This is where choices between right and wrong are made. The pre-frontal lobe makes assessments based on our understanding of future consequences of current activities, and has the ability to work toward a defined goal.[9]

 

Research from the Journal of Adolescent Health reports that in a study of 1254 U.S. adolescents only 80 had not played electronic games in the previous 6 months, almost half played at least one mature-rated violent game regularly, one third of boys and 11 percent of the girls played games nearly every day. Only one in twenty plays often or always with a parent and there is a positive correlation with playing with strangers over the internet, having a game system and computer in the adolescent’s bedroom, and using games to manage their anger.[10]National Institute on Media and the Family[11]  reports that there is an increase of children playing video games, including M-rated (Mature) games that are sexually explicit. Such games are played by millions of under-age players. In one country, 61 percent of children own M-rated games. It seems that every year these games are more violent, more sexually explicit, and contain more profane language. Sadly, some parents do not know the content of their children’s and teens’ video games. Parents interested in screening them should visit the Web sites recommended inrefer to endnotes nine and ten.[12][13]

 

The Xbox Live and PlayStation 3 (PS3) video games systems are widely popular today, boasting more than tens of millions of customers worldwide. Within the 16 sixteen days leading up to Christmas 2011, total sales were above one billion dollars.   At the end of 2010, almost 43 million Xboxes and more than 43 million PS3 devices had been sold since they came on the market, and Nintendo’s Wii had reached 75 million.  In the time since then, no doubt the number has gone up.[14]

 

Most parents are totally unaware of the damage that is being done to the minds of teens and children by most video games. Such killing games have a hypnotic intrigue which that captures the minds of players. How can we reconcile virtual killing as a recreational sport when the Ten Commandments say, “You shall not kill??

 

Be “hands-on-parents and protect your children’s minds. Parents can monitor their children’s use of video games. Failure to do so has resulted in such incidents as occurred in Columbine, Colorado (U.S.A.), where two teens attacked their classmates, killing 13 thirteen people, including themselves, and left the world in shock.

 

 

Research on use of television

Research surveys indicate that television is the background noise in many homes. In a wWestern country 65 percent% of children under the age of six live where TV is running at least half the time,[15] and some people even sleep with the TV running and bombarding their subconscious minds. Many children’s characters are being influenced more by TV writers and celebrities than by their parents.

 

 

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Research—Infants & TV

 

“Much new media is being targeted at infants and toddlers.”

 

 

“Much new media is being targeted at infants and toddlers.”[16] In some countries the TV is a baby-sitter to keep small children occupied. In America the United States, 36 percent of children six and under have a TV in their room for convenient, daily watching. Such children spend an average of two hours a day with media.[17] Some of this six-and-under age group sleep with the TV turned on. This is not happening in all countries, for which we are thankful. Think it through.: Iis there a growing problem of media in your country and in your home?

 

 

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Research—TV is the Background Noise of our Lives

●   65% of children live where TV is running half the time

●         36% of homes leave TV on all dayThink it through: is there a growing problem of media in your country and in your home?

 

 

     

Transmitting values to the coming generation!

 

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What are the children being taught?

 

 

 

Values will be transmitted to children. The question is: Whose values will be transmitted? How can parents transmit worthwhile values to the coming generation? Whose values do you want the children entrusted to your care to have—those of the media industry, or your religious and spiritual values? “Hands-on-parents not only carefully monitor their children’s lifestyle experiences but also teach them how to make wise media choices. They take time to talk to their children about holding up high standards, about what is right and wrong, and they impress upon them the importance of having positive values. They focus on healthy family relations and proper boundaries.

 

Something Bbetter

“Hands-on-parents invest in character-development activities. Teaching, learning, playing, creating, exercising, doing good, working, camping, learning skills, worshiping, taking family outings, and vacationing are some good ways of spending time together in the family. Such ways will make a difference for good in the lives of your jewels.”

 

Add before you subtract.   This means it is not enough to take away objectionable media without substituting something better. Creative parents provide alternatives to TV, Internet, Facebook, and video games. Encourage your children to learn life skills such as cooking healthy meals. Encourage music or art lessons and show your children how to serve others. Teach work ethics by planning home chores and assigning home responsibilities. Go to museums and enjoy participating in family projects. There are unlimited learning experiences to enjoy as a family.

 

One father decided that his boys were spending too much time on with television and video games. He thought, If I take television away from them, I must replace it with something better. The something better turned out to be the building of a boat as a family project, which led to adventurous sailing toin many places in the world. Another family built a cabin in the mountains. It took over more than ten years, and the sons learned new skills that contributed to future building experiences.

 

Ben Carson, the famous pediatric neurosurgeon, had a mother who was a “hands-on- parent and cared about what went into his mind. One day she announced to Ben and his brother, “I’ve decided you boys are watching too much television.” From then on, she limited them to three programs a week. This mother, who could hardly read herself, sent her children to the public library, requiring them to read at least two b

ooks a week. By the time Ben entered seventh grade, he was at the top of his class.

Consider these guidelines for media

 

 

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If you choose to have your children use electronic media:

  • Keep TV/computer in a communal room (none in the bedrooms!).
  • Switch off media and cell phones at meal times, during family devotions, for homework, and at bedtime.
  1. Keep TV/computer in communal room.
  2. Switch TV off at meals, family devotions, homework, and bed time.
  3. Choose TV programs that do not glorify commandment-breaking.
  4. View quality, wholesome, information for mind and character.

 

 

 

 

 

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  • Choose TV programs that do not glorify breaking the Ten Commandments.
  • View high-quality, wholesome information for the mind and character.
  • Put time limits on use of TV, Internet, music players, and cell phone texting.
  1. Keep TV/computer in communal room.
  2. Switch TV off at meals, family devotions, homework, and bed time.
  3. Choose TV programs that do not glorify commandment-breaking.
  4. View quality, wholesome, information for mind and character.

 

 

 

 

 

If you choose to have your children use electronic media:

  • Keep TV/computer in a communal room (none in the bedrooms!).
  • Switch off media and cell phones at meal times, for during family devotions, for homework, and at bedtime.
  • Choose TV programs that do not glorify breaking the Ten Commandments.
  • View high-quality, wholesome information for the mind and character.
  • Put time limits on use of TV, Internet, iPodsmusic players, and cell phone texting.

 

Connecting the Prime-time Generation with Something Better

 

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Youth like Anna —thankful for “hands-on” parents

 

 

 

 

Today there are “hands-on-parents who are making a difference in the lives of their children. At age 15fifteen, Anna already baked all kinds of delicious breads, cooked excellent vegetarian dishes with and without recipes, had professional skills on the computer, and formatted manuscripts. She now is an outstanding pianist, plays the violin, harp, and organ, and leads out in spiritual activities. Anna has a sweet, optimistic spirit and is a radiant, healthy young lady woman who is well adjusted and a true joy to her family and others.

 

What makes her such an unusual teen? She says: “One of the things that I really appreciate about my parents is their dedication to God and to the three of us children. They have guided us to a God-like life. My mother taught me how to run a household, so now I can do almost everything myself, even when she is not home. Dad taught me to use the computer, including teaching me InDesign and Photoshop. My parents encourage me to take time for fun hobbies such as music, card making, photography, ice -skating, and horseback riding.

 

“Our family does a lot of things together. Every summer we fly to Europe to visit my grandma in Wales. Our family also benefits from time together, whether we are sledding, playing games, or having family prayers. I am very thankful for my parents, for all they have done and are still doing. Their lives are an example to all of us. Our family relationship continues to grow, as does our relationship with God. I know we will be in heaven together—forever.” Wow! What a testimony of a connected family.

 

Time between two family members

It isn’t always necessary for everybody in the family to do things together. Personalized attention is important. One father has two sons. He plans special activities for them on different nights once a month. This way he has “prime time” with each son separately.   In another family, it was the teen--age son who gave a “coupon” to his mother as a birthday gift and took her out to eat at the best restaurant in the area.town.   They stopped in front of the main entrance, and he handed the keys to a valet to park the car while and he escorted his mom in to enjoy a special Italian meal.

 

Quality time can be short amounts of time. Even five to ten minutes of undivided attention gives the message that you care. Mother can stop her whirlwind of activities long enough to sit on the bed while her daughter tells her about the spelling bee she’s entered.   Dad can take a few minutes after supper to play basketball with his son.

 

Whole-family time

Studies indicate that children who grow up in homes where they have positive experiences feel that they belong. When they know that they are appreciated, they actually do better in school, have a healthier self-concept, and have more successful marriages.

 

 

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What really makes a happy family?

  • 1,500 school children were asked to tell what they thought makes a happy family?
  • The most frequently given answer was:  “Doing things together” as a family.

 

“Doing things together.”

 

 

 

 

What really makes a happy family? Fifteen hundred school children were asked to tell what they thought makes a happy family. The most -frequently given answer was, “Doing things together as a family.”[18]

 

Spending time together is actually a “love language.” A grandmother asked her granddaughter what made her feel loved. She responded, “I feel loved when people do things with me. I feel like I am important to them.”

 

Children appreciate parents who are less stressed. A frazzled mother or father often contributes to moodiness, tension, and unhappiness in the home. Taking a moment to relax and spend quality time with the children meets their needs and creates a positive family environment.

 

Investment in the family pays big dividends. In these times of economic crisis, expensive vacations may be impossible. Why not plan a mini-vacation day at the beach, a trip to the zoo, a backyard party, hiking paths a trail in the woods, or cross-country skiing near home?

 

“It’s not the years or days we remember, it’s the moments.”

 

Time for grandpa and grandma

 

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Time for Grandpa and Grandma

 

 

Retired grandpas and grandmas are living on one of three levels. They are either “slow go,” “go go,” or “no go.” The level, which that the grandparents are on, dictates the activities they can do. No matter which level, they still need quality time with family, young and old. Some grandparents are busy exploring the world or spending their time in exciting learning activities to keep their minds active. Some are isolated at home or in a retirement center; they are lonely. Take time to give them lots of hugs, hold their hands, or put body lotion on their arms and legs. Write letters to them. Do things for them that are difficult for them to do themselves at their age. This will make them feel special.

 

Time together as a family builds healthy emotions, serves as an antidote for loneliness, reduces feelings of isolation and alienation, and may actually improve their physical and emotional health. It makes them feel connected, secure, and still loved and appreciated in their older age. An example of this is a family who regularly visits their elderly grandma in the family farm home. Recently, they came together to celebrate her 107th birthday. In bringing her joy, they were also blessed. When you honor your parents and grandparents, God blesses you and promises you a long life.

 

 

 

 

Time Wwith God

 

PowerPoint© Slide 16

 

Time with God

Daily Family Devotions

 

 

The most beneficial time of the day is the time we spend with God, who helps us orchestrate our busy day and makes it go smoothly. Having daily family time with God is a must! Taking a few minutes, morning and evening, to read from the Scriptures, a devotional book, or a storybook for children, and praying are essential parts of a well-balanced day. God will keep us from making mistakes, teach us what to do, and even protect us from harm and danger throughout the day in response to our prayers. One parent said that when she thinks of all the wickedness happening outside her home, she cannot let her children and husband go out without prayer. The door of the house is one of their prayer places, their prayer portal. It is here where that she puts her arms around her husband and children and whispers a prayer of protection as they leave for the day.

 

In the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve had the privilege of talking with God face- to- face. We still can talk with Him in prayer. This is a “Good Morning” family routine.

 

 

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When Time Began
Creation and time (1)

“God saw that it was good”

“God has made everything beautiful in its time.”

 

 

It has been said, “God has made everything beautiful in its time.” Our concept of time in this world derives from the Creation story, as recorded in Genesis 1 and 2. On the first day God created light; on the second, He separated the land from the seas; on the third, He made vegetation, etcand so on. At the conclusion of each phase, the Scriptures record that “God saw that it was good.” This shows that even for God, “it was good” to take one thing at a time and to invest as much time as needed in each important task. Each task had its rightful place in the orderly sequence of weekly duties.

 

When the six days of creation were completed, the great God celebrated and established a memorial to His work. To celebrate His completed work, God could have put a marble monument with a big plaque that could have been read miles away. But then not everyone would have equal access to visit that monument. Instead, He established His memorial in time, so that all the human family could worship their Creator and enjoy a special family day. Thus, from their mutual beginning in Eden, the Sabbath and the family have been inseparably linked.

 

To ensure that the human family would not spend their time in a ceaseless whirl of activity and work, God ordained a “time-out” so that every seventh day they could enjoy a whole day of rest. The Bible says:

 

 “Thus the heavens and the earth, and all the host of them, were finished. And on the seventh day God ended His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done. Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made.[19]

 

The Sabbath

 

PowerPoint© Slide 18

The Sabbath

In Eden and on Sinai it was given as a special gift. of family time. These holy hours permit you us to take time with your family and with your Creator.

 

In Eden and on Mount Sinai, the Sabbath was given as a special gift. These holy hours permit you to spend time with your family and with your Creator.

 

Human beings function best on a seven -day cycle. After six days of work, the seventh enables you to recuperate in body and soul. During the French Revolution, Napoleon not only instituted the metric system, but also tried to introduce a ten-day week. It was an utter failure, with physical, mental, and emotional collapse. Our bodies and minds function best on a seven-day cycle.

 

At Creation, God invented families to have companionship—to work together, play together, pray together, laugh together, and enjoy each other. Home was to be a place where real love was in the atmosphere and shown to every family member, where parents focused on educating and passing down their spiritual heritage to the coming generation.

 

Using our time to optimize family-ness

Here are a few hints on how to make the best use of your time with the family:

 

1. Strong families plan ahead.

 

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  • Strong families plan aheadto eat together

 

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Mark your calendar for family events so that everyone can anticipate them—one-day vacations, camping trips, birthdays, family nights, husband- and -wife dates, celebrations, activities serving others, and medical appointments.

 

Planning ahead includes recognizing the priorities that correspond to different epochs of life. Dr. Dean Ornish, famed scientist who first proved that heart disease can not only be stopped but reversed with proper lifestyle, tells how, at a certain stage of his career, he was offered the job he had always dreamed of in his earlier professional years. There was only one drawback: although it was a prestigious job, it would consume his time just as he and his wife were considering starting a family. Dr. Ornish turned down the golden opportunity because his wife and future child deserved his time: they were the true golden chance of his lifetime.[20]

 

2. Strong families enjoy meals together.

 

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  • Strong families plan to eat together

 

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Eating together was so important to one family with busy high -school teens that every morning at family devotions, they scheduled meal times for the rest of the day. Some days it was impossible to eat every meal together, but they worked at the plan. There are families who never eat together, or perhaps only eat together on weekends. They miss out on a lot of interesting times of family togetherness. Aside from nourishing the body, meals are perfect times for connecting and nourishing each other’s lives.

 

3. Strong families share chores.

 

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·    Strong families tend to share chores so no one person is overloaded and all feel a part of the family firm.

 

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Most strong families share chores so that no one person is overloaded and all feel a part of the family firm.

 Cooperation makes more time available for all members of the family. While While families work together, some of their most memorable conversations can occur. It is still true that “many hands make light work.” Children who learn to help when they are young will be more responsible as they arrive at adulthood and become husbands and wives.

 

4. Strong families enjoy each other and build family identity..

 

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·    . Strong families enjoy each other and build family identity. Strong families tend to share chores so no one person is overloaded and all feel a part of the family firm.

                       

 

Each family is unique—each has its own identity. Family history is recorded mentally. Storytelling is one way to pass the family’s uniqueness to the next generations. Family history is recorded mentally. It takes time to preserve and retell the family tales. When you tell humorous stories of the past, the level of endorphins in the blood stream increases and everyone feels an emotional high.

 

One couple wrote:

 

 “We had some cousins over for dinner on Sunday. Cousin Jim told of the time he sold books all summer, worked like a dog, and only lost $100 from the whole experience! Then John told his story of selling books with his sister. He told how suspicious farmers thought he had a stolen car because it had out-of-state license plates. They reported him to the sheriff, who impounded his car. Both of these incidents, which seemed so bleak when they happened 45 forty-five years ago, were now hilarious. We all laughed until we cried. The younger generation listening to the table talk, drank it all in and laughed too. They probably learned that kids of today aren’t the only ones who ever have problems.

 

 

What are the legends and folk stories in your family?

Retell them to the next generation.

 

The family reward

 

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Susanna Wesley

                        

 

In the early 1700s, Susanna Wesley lived in Epworth, England. She was a busy mother and the wife of a spiritual leader. Susanna had nineteen children, ten of whom survived infancy. Our story is about hHer son John , who was her fifteenth-born child.

 

Susanna ran the household, schooled the children herself, and organized women’s groups. Yet, in spite of her busy schedule, she made it a rule to dedicate one hour exclusively to each child every week. That meant ten hours a week. Thursday evening was John’s time, and Susanna was especially careful for him, because of an earlier incident when his life had been saved by extraordinary efforts after the rectory had caught on fire. Ever afterwards she viewed him as a “brand plucked from the burning,” a child of Providence.

 

Was it worth all the hours Susanna spent with John? From those heart-to-heart hours came one of God’s greatest servants of all time. Ultimately, millions would live transformed lives from the influence of his John Wesley’s service to God. From heris mother’ precious moments came a life that changed the course of England and probably saved it from the tide of social upheaval and bloody revolution that swept across the European continent at that time, costing untold lives.

 

Some parents dream of getting ahead, of reaching fame or riches through their professional career. That may be a good dream. But aren’t parents already rich? What greater task is there than polishing the diamonds and the jewels—your children—right in your home? This takes time.

 

Susanna Wesley took fleeting moments to build a character that would last through eternity. You also have sixty minutes in every hour. May God guide you as you take the raw materials of family time and mold it into beautiful sparkling jewels that will shine forever reflecting God’s glory.

 

 

 

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“Lost, yesterday, somewhere between sunrise and sunset, two golden hours, each set with sixty diamond minutes.  No reward offered for they are gone forever.”

–Lydia Sigourney

 

“Lost, yesterday, somewhere between sunrise and sunset, two golden hours, each set with sixty diamond minutes. No reward offered for they are gone forever.[21]  

 

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Prayer

Heavenly Father, You are the giver of time. We thank You for twenty-four hours each day and for one day of rest each week from our work. Teach me to use them wisely, in a balanced way. Give me right priorities so that there is time, first for You, then for meaningful moments with my husband/wife, children, parents, others, and for my self-care. Amen Lost, yesterday, somewhere between sunrise and sunset, two golden hours, each set with sixty diamond minutes.  No reward offered for they are gone forever.”

–Lydia Sigourney

 

 

Prayer

Heavenly Father, You are the giver of time. We thank You for 24 twenty-four hours each day and for one day of rest each week from our work. Teach me to use them wisely, in a balanced way. Give me right priorities so that there is time, first for You, then for meaningful moments with my husband/wife, children, parents, others, and for my self -care. Amen.

 

Reflect/Discuss

 

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Group Discussion

1.  Recall Peak family experiences.

Think of 1 or 2 “peak experiences” thatwhich your family enjoyed. Talk about them as a family or with others.Briefly share. Time limit: 5 minutes.

            (1).

            (2).

 

 

 

 

 

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2.  Time Robbers:

Some people rob your money. What or who robs your time? 

Discuss your biggest time robbers.How do you feel about it?  What can you do about them?

 

 

 

1.   Recall peak family experiences:

      Tthink of one or two fun “peak experiences” which that your family enjoyed.

      Talk about them as a family or with others.

      1a. ______________________________________________________________________________________

      2b. ______________________________________________________________________________________

2.         Some people rob you of your money. What or who robs you of your time? How do you feel about it? What are your biggest time robbers? What can you do about them?

 

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3.  Sixty Seconds can change a life!

  • Can there be quality time in “60 seconds”?
  • Do you remember 60 seconds which changed your life or someone else’s life you know?
  • How did they change your life? What could you do in sixty seconds that could change someone’s life in a positive way or bring encouragement and joy to them?
  •             Why do you think so
  •  
  • What could you do in 60 seconds that could change someone’s life in a positive way or bring joy to them?

 

 

 

 

 

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4.  Meaningful family activities

  • Even in an electronic busy world, with intense living and high stress, what kind of meaningful activities can families enjoy together?

 

 

 

3.   Sixty seconds can change a life! Can there be quality time in 60 sixty seconds? Why do you think so? Do you remember 60 sixty seconds that changed your life or someone else’s life that you know? How did they change your life? What could you do in 60 sixty seconds that could change someone’s life in a positive way or bring encouragement and joy to them?

4.   Even in a busy electronic world, with intense living and high stress, what kind of meaningful activities can families enjoy together?

 

 

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Personal Intentionality

 My Time Covenant

I have decided to take _______ minutes daily

      for spiritual growth.

I choose to take more quality and quantity time      with my family.

            Which of these are essential to you?

___ Start and end the day with God—read Scripture and pray.

___ Set my priorities for my daily life.

___ Record daily at least six positive things to do, and try during the day to complete them.

___ Protect myself from “time robbers.”

___ Simplify my life—do the essentials.

 

 

 


 

 

 
 

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___ Plan to do at least one good thing for someone daily.

___ Take time to follow the Health Rules: exercise, drink water, eat vegetables and fruits, be positive.

___ Eat together as a family as often as possible. Husbands or wives with or without children are encouraged to eat meals together as frequently as feasible.

My Family time plans are for:

__Spiritual growth

__More fun activities

__Family exercise

__Family vacations

__Family council time

__Working together

Families that play together stay together!

 

 

 

 

 
 

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My Family time plans are for:

__Spiritual growth

__More fun activities

__Family exercise

__Family vacations

__Family council time

__Working together

Families that play together stay together!

___ Set time aside for frequent communication with husband/wife, children, and friends.

___ [If a parent] Plan time for being a “hands-on“ parent—give time to meet children’s needs.

___ All family members set time aside for home routines.

 

 

 

 

 
 

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Personal Time Essentials

___ Sleep 7–8+ hours daily (children and teens need 9–10 hours daily).

___ Take time to rest on God’s Holy Day.

___ Monthly, plan a one-day or a half-day vacation with family.

My Family time plans are for:

__Spiritual growth

__More fun activities

__Family exercise

__Family vacations

__Family council time

__Working together

Families that play together stay together!

 

 

 

 

Intentionality

r      I have decided to take _____ minutes daily for spiritual growth.

r      I choose to take more quality time with my family.

r   I want to simplify my life and “return to the essentials” so I can have more meaningful family relationship time. My plan is ______________________________________________________________________.

 

My family-time plans are for:

____ Spiritual growth

____ More fun activities

____ Family exercise

____ Family vacations

____ Family council time

____ Working together

 

Families that play together stay together!

 

Personal Time Essentials

Which of these are essential to you?

___ Start and end the day with God—read Scripture and pray.

___ Set my priorities for my daily life.

___ Record daily at least six positive things to do, and try during the day to complete them.

___ Protect myself from “Ttime Rrobbers.”

___ Simplify my life—do the essentials.

___ Plan to do at least one good thing for someone daily.

___ Take time to follow the Health Rules: exercise, drink water, eat vegetables and fruits, be positive.

___ Eat together as a family as often as possible. Husbands or wives with or without children are encouraged to eat meals together as frequently as feasible.

___ Set time aside for frequent communication with husband/wife, children, and friends.

___ [If a parent] Plan time for being a “Hhands-on-Pparent”—give time to meet children’s needs.

___ All family members set time aside for home routines.

___ Sleep 7-8+ hours daily (children and teens need 9-10 hours daily).

___ Take time to rest on God’s Holy Day.

___ Monthly, plan a one-day or a half-day vacation with family.

 

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“Are you rich and don’t know it?”

The End

 

 

 

 

 

THERE IS NO ENDNOTE 5 THERE IS NO ENDNOTE 9, THERE IS NO ENDNOTE 11, 13,16, 18.

 



[1]. Adapted from Russell H. Conwell, Acres of Diamonds (New York: Harper and Brothers, 1915).  The passing of years makes it difficult to sort out what is legend and what is historical fact.  Golconda was apparently a fort where diamonds were stored and traded.  The diamonds were probably found in the Kollur Mine. The two mentioned diamonds are actually in England and Russia respectively. Russell Conwell, founder and first president of Temple University in Philadelphia popularized this legend told him by an Arab guide and gave the speech over 6,000 times around the world.

[2]. Genesis 1:24-27, 2:19-23.

[3]. Genesis 1:27-28,; 2:20-24,; 3:20; Psalm 127:3.

[4] . Quotation from Margaret E. Mulac.  www.greatthoughtstreasury.com/q=node/220738. Retrieved 03-13-2012.

[5]. The Oxford Book of Quotations (2002) attributes this to Horace Mann.

[6]. Dolores Curran, Traits of a Healthy Family: Fifteen Traits Commonly Found in Healthy Families by Those Who Work with Them (San Francisco, CalifCA.: Harper &and Row, 1983).

[7]. “Internet Dominates Young Adult Media Time,” Marketing Charts,  http://www.marketingcharts.com/television/internet-dominates-young-adult....

[8] . Ilan I. Goldberg, Michal Harel, and Rafael Malach, “When the Brain Loses Its Self: Prefrontal Inactivation during Sensorimotor Processing,” Neuron, Vol 50, 329-339, April 20, 2006, Department of Neurobiology, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel.

[9]. “Brainwaves,” WhiteDotBoard.org, http://www.tvsmarter.com/documents/brainwaves.html.

[10] . Cheryl K. Olson, Lawrence A Kutner, et al, “Factors Correlated with Violent Video Game Use by Adolescent Boys and Girls,”  Journal of Adolescent Health (Vol 41, # 1, 77-83, July 2007).

[11]. National Institute on Media & the Family, Tenth Annual MediaWise Report, 2005.

[12]. See “Parents’ Guide to Video Games,” Focus on the Family, http://www.focusonthefamily.com/parenting/protecting_your_family/parents-guide-...; and “Media Influence,” Focus on the Family, http://www.troubledwith.com/ParentingChildren/MediaInfluence.cfm..

[15].   Victoria J. Rideout, Elizabeth A. Vandewater, and Ellen A. Wartella, Zero to Six: Electronic Media in the Lives of Infants, Toddlers, and Preschoolers (Menlo Park, CA: The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, (2003), 4).

[16].   Ibid., 2.

[17]. Ibid., 4.

[18].   Nick Stinnett and John Defrain, Secrets of Strong Families, (New York: Berkley Books, 1986), 81Marion .L.each Jacobsen, How to Keep Your Family Together and Still Have Fun (Grand Rapids, MichMI: Zondervan, 1969), ??.

[19].   Genesis 2:1-3 (NKJV).

[20].   Dean Ornish, M.D. Love & Survival (New York: Harper Perennial, 1999) , 94.

[21] . Attributed to Lydia H. Sigourney according to Tyron Edwards, et al, The New Dictionary of Thoughts, (N.p.: Standard Book Co, 1960), 674.

 

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