One of Life’s Greatest Dynamics!

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As a social work major family is something that I am learning a lot about. Whether it be definitions of the family, functions, roles and responsibilities, or my personal favorite, rituals of the family. Family is one of the major subjects to this field of study. It is so important because most of what social workers do relates to the family in one way or another. It could be working on a case to keep a family together, it could be counseling a family, or it could be tracking what has happened in a family to see if it is relevant to current things happening. The possibilities are endless!

When I think about my family, I can’t help but smile, and maybe even giggle a bit. While my family can be pretty serious, my family values joy and laughter as the main source of interaction. There is never a dull moment when we are all together. Because of that, as I am now in college away from my family, it has been brought to my attention by my friends at school that I am always laughing and cracking jokes. I mean, my mid-week stress breakdown is usually a laugh attack!  But I was not just born this way; as a giggly person (my parents may disagree). I learned to value fun through my family. Family is a place where we learn our values.

My point in talking about families, however, is not to bore you with all of the information I am learning in my social work classes, rather it is to talk about the importance of how families are a blessing from God.

We can see throughout the whole of Scripture that families are everywhere. Starting in Genesis there is Adam and Eve with their family, Abraham and Sarah and their son Isaac. Then there is Jacob’s family… with Joseph being his favorite son and Joseph’s twelve brothers. Skipping ahead we can see in Job that the adversary, Satan, took away Job’s family. Skipping even further ahead to the New Testament, Jesus is born into the family of Mary and Joseph. John the Baptist is born into the family of Elizabeth and Zachariah. Finally, Paul shares in the book of Romans that we are adopted into God’s family and are called His children (Romans 8).

Families are a God-given gift that help shape us throughout our entire lifetime. While all of our definitions of family may be different and look different, it is still an important relationship in life. In fact, they can be Awesome Relationships! Family teaches us how to laugh and have fun. Family allows us to grow through trials and hard times, yet still come out loving one another. Family teaches us how to respond to the things of this world.

My family has helped me grow into the person I am today. They have supported me through the good decisions and the bad, through the tough times and the good times, and have always been there for me. Most of the memories I have as a child come from being with my family. I remember countless family vacations and other fun memories from the different things we did together.

So far, I have only talked about the good things about family – the things that make you feel warm and fuzzy and hopefully grateful. But we have to realize that in our society today, our families are not going to look the same, they are not going to look like the “American Dream” type family, and they are most definitely not going to be perfect. Families endure the hardest things in life together, whether it is getting bad news, losing a loved one, or even financial struggles. Families stick together.

Lastly, family does not have to be limited to those that you live with. It does not have to be those that you are “related” to. If you ask me, a huge family that I have is my Church family. God has graciously given me brothers and sisters in Christ to grow in this Spiritual walk with. Yes, it is important to do that with those that you are related to as well, but this opens the doors to how we are all adopted into the family of our Father in Heaven.

Pastor Aaron preached this past Sunday about how to have an “Awesome Family”. He shares some great points about why family is so critically important and how it is necessary in our lives. I encourage you to take the next hour or so and listen to the Biblical points that Pastor Aaron shares about so that you too, can have an awesome family, not just an average one. http://painesvilleag.com/awesome-relationships-2

Who do you identify as part of your family? Take some time and think about who God has placed in your life to identify as your family and then thank each member for traveling with you through life!

Jenny Bushnell,
College Student, Writer, Blogger

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