Family traditions are a beautiful way to instill memories, and even values into our children. I’m so excited to begin digging deeper into this topic as the holiday season is growing near. I can imagine now all of the fun we will have with our families!
But first, God. God should come first always, right? So, He should definitely come first in our traditions.
Let me paint a word picture for you. Since it’s fall, imagine your family is torn between visiting a pumpkin patch and a haunted house. After not giving it much thought, your family pulls into the parking lot of the haunted house. Once a legion of zombies and demons stroll past your car, you begin to think that this might not have been such a good idea!
Like everything we do in life, we really should think about our traditions through the lens of Scripture before implementing them in our family. Here are a few first steps to take when we decide what traditions would be best for our families.
Does this tradition glorify God?
Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.
1 Corinthians 10:31
God should be glorified in all things, including our traditions. This doesn’t mean that all of our traditions must be ultra-spiritual, but that we need to look at His attributes when we decide what to celebrate. Take the fruits of the Spirit for example, which are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. When we live our life for the Lord these attitudes should spring from us. They should be found in our traditions as well. Likewise, if the Word of God indicates that we should avoid certain activities, we should apply this teaching to our traditions as well.
Does this tradition focus on the lovely?
Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.
As I touched on last time, our traditions should exemplify Philippians 4:8. Our thoughts have a tendency to fixate on what we are actually doing, and so we should strive to fixate on the lovely things in life. With the possibility of so many good and noble traditions out there, it doesn’t make any sense to participate in anything that celebrates wrongdoing.
Does this tradition strengthen our relationship with the Lord?
Commit your works to the LORD, and your plans will be established.
Again, while our traditions do not need to be super spiritual, they should point us to God. Aren’t we thankful to the Lord when we share a special moment with our children? Aren’t we in awe when we watch a magnificent sunset? Including beautiful and meaningful traditions in our home can and will strengthen our ties to the Almighty. We must commit our traditions to the Lord, and He will establish our plans.
A few last thoughts…
We can be assured that when we spend time investing in our family, God is glorified. He instituted the family as the basic unit of society, and through the family He accomplishes many of His goals. Planning traditions to strengthen our family unit is a noble thing!
We must remember that God has noted that the traditions and customs of people are usually vain. (Jeremiah 10:3) We must take great measures to ensure that our traditions are meaningful and do not fall into this category. We want our traditions to count, and to really have a positive and eternal impact on our family culture.
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