You Can Have a Happy Family - Page 2 of 2
by John Lowe
Those are the ways that we can miss having a happy family, so now let’s see the WAYS WE CAN HAVE A HAPPY FAMILY.
First, we can have a happy family when we value each other.
We began by reading Matthew 6:26 which said, “Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?” Our heavenly Father feeds the birds of the air. Birds cannot sow. Birds cannot reap. But what about us? Birds cannot gather anything into barns, but you and I can. The little bird is trusting God to take care of him, and we are to trust Him, also. Jesus asked, “Are you not of more value than they.” He values us more than the birds, so we can be sure that He will take care of us.
People are happy when each member of the family recognizes the value of every other member. People are unhappy in their homes when they don’t treasure one another. Friends, one of the best things that you can do is to respect others and then to love them for Jesus sake, because after all God loves them and Jesus died for them. We are each God’s gift to the other members of our family. God stands behind the value of every person and guarantees it.
The next time we are tempted to ignore our friends or to shout at them or to ridicule their efforts, we should remember we are dealing with someone that God loves; someone He created and shared with us for our joy and fulfillment. The next thing I should say is, we can have a happy family when we understand that life is more than externals.
We lay up treasures in heaven when we consider that all we have belongs to God and we use it to magnify His righteousness and advance His kingdom (Matt. 6:33). It means much more than merely giving offerings to God, although that is important. It means total stewardship of life so that God is in complete control and our one desire is to glorify Him. This is the secret of a happy life and a life that is free of worry.
Listen as I read verse 25 again. “Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?” Life is more than food and drink, clothes and shelter.
As important as these things are they are not the goal of life.
It is ironic that in most Christian congregations talk about food, clothing, and houses is a discussion of status symbols, while in much of the world such a discussion is a debate about survival. We don’t talk about just food, but about dining at the right restaurants!
Our children no longer just have to have a pair of jeans; they must have designer jeans. It isn’t just the house, but where it is located that is so important. And something that bothers me is that today we read about children killing other children over name brand tennis shoes. What a terrible tragedy.
I read recently that tithes and offerings are down and that the result is that fewer missionaries are being sent out. It’s disgraceful, and I must
ask God, “Please forgive us for our poor giving habits and for explaining it away by saying our bills are too high, when much of our world doesn’t even have the luxury of having bills!”
Friends, a happy family puts enough emphasis on the necessities and desires of life to provide motivation for work and being thrifty. But a happy family is not consumed by a passion for gadgets and expensive toys—nor are they overcome by a desire for life’s essentials.
Jesus doesn’t tell us not to worry about food and clothing because they are unimportant. Just the opposite. In Matthew 6:32-33, Jesus asserts that the Father knows we need these things and He will provide them. They are so important that God will not leave their provision up to us. He intends to provide for His own.
Finally, we can have a happy family when we find the purpose in life that God has for our family. When a family sees itself as a thing of love and service that can be offered to God for His use in blessing and redeeming the world, that family is on its way to happiness. That applies to the family of God that’s in this room, because you can make a difference when you act as a unit to help others; or to show love for others and for one another.
Happiness is what happens to us when we are doing God’s will, that is, doing things His way. A family is happy when its members are fully committed to seeking the kingdom of God, first. Listen as I read Matthew 6:33 again. “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.”
This verse reminds us of the necessity of setting priorities for our lives. We lay up treasures in heaven when we consider that all we have belongs to God and we use it to magnify His righteousness and advance His kingdom. “Seeking the kingdom of God” means much more than merely giving offerings to God, although that is important. It means total stewardship of life so that God is in complete control, and our one desire is to glorify Him.
This is the secret of a happy life and a life that is free of worry.
If God and His will are in first place, nothing else can be above or before Him. When God is at the center of our lives everything else fits into place. Parents can help their children if, by example and training, they teach them how to live by loving God more than anything else and to love their neighbor as much as they love themselves.
The most important thing in life is to put God first.
You too can have a happy family. It won’t be easy, but it is possible. You won’t be happy every day—there will be times when you go through painful and difficult trials—but by the grace of God even those moments can contribute to a growing joy and happiness that you will find as you live and grow together within His will and loving care.
So for a happy life, make God first in your life. Read His word daily. Pray about everything and worry about nothing. I could give you a long list of “dos” and “don’ts” now, but instead I will just say “be like Jesus.” Try to be like God’s Son; His life is to be our example.