This post from Eric Geiger caught my eye because I’m currently reading the same book (The Boy Crisis by Warren Farrell and John Gray). I love the fact that secular, academic research continues to point to the value of fathers and/or father figures in the lives of children, especially boys. Eric highlights some key father impact areas noted in the book that have been confirmed by research. They are indeed noteworthy.
But, so far, my favorite take-away from the book is even simpler. I’ve lost count of how many times the authors mention one specific simple thing that every family could do to improve the mental, physical, social and emotional health of their boys.
Eat dinner together.
How’s that for simple. But in our time, admittedly, it’s more challenging than it should be. I’m struck by the fact that we often can’t do family dinner because we must run kids to practice for sports, music or some other hobby that we think will be fulfilling for them. Clearly, we’ve sacrificed the great impact of meals together for experiences that produce mediocre results at best. You may say that his football team or his karate crew are ‘family’ to him. However, to be clear, that ‘family’ will never be as important as his nuclear family.
I’ve heard Tony Evans do an entire message on Psalm 128 (see below). His premise was that a Jewish man would teach, train and discipline (lump it all together in one word DISCIPLE) his children at the dinner table. There’s just something about coming around the table for a meal, as a family, that gives stability, comfort and confidence (as well as nourishment) to us all.
So, here’s a summertime challenge for us.
Lay down some good evening opportunities outside of your home for some GREAT MOMENTS around your table!
Dad, initiate the conversation with your wife. What would you need to do to make dinnertime a priority in your house this summer? (Bonus points if you make your table a phone free zone!).
Blessed Is Everyone Who Fears the Lord
1 Blessed is everyone who fears the Lord,
who walks in his ways!
2 You shall eat the fruit of the labor of your hands;
you shall be blessed, and it shall be well with you.
3 Your wife will be like a fruitful vine
within your house;
your children will be like olive shoots
around your table.
4 Behold, thus shall the man be blessed
who fears the Lord.
5 The Lord bless you from Zion!
May you see the prosperity of Jerusalem
all the days of your life!
6 May you see your children’s children!
Peace be upon Israel!