a dear friend of mine gave me a book called Together At Home by Dean and Grace Merrill. the book is for mom’s and dad’s with children ages 6-12 and is a resource for raising christian children. home together night is done once a week. the merrill’s recounts sixty-one units they taught their children in this season of life. i read this book in january and the Lord planted a seed in my heart to begin to establish time set aside for discipling graham. i know he’s only almost 3 but i felt led to create this rhythm in our family early on.  i dog eared several pages, one of which was a chapter about honoring each child and affirming how God created each one unique. it was a time to let their children know they are valuable. they did fun things this night like letting the child being honored choose what was for dinner. let them grocery shop and prepare dinner. the table center piece displayed their favorite things which would help facilitate conversation over dinner. after dinner they would ask that child what their favorite this or that is. this evening may also include pulling out photo albums of when they were babies or when they got dedicated to the Lord or baptized. and sometimes the evening would include a compliment flower (or basketball court for their son) with petals (basketballs) that described a character trait like enthusiastic, loving, talented etc. on them. then it would get displayed on their bedroom door to serve as encouragement for several weeks.

i’ve kept this book in the back of my mind since january waiting till i had the time and energy to begin planning each evening together. this week we had our first family together night. i knew we’d have to be flexible with graham. things didn’t go perfect of course but i felt that graham was learning to distinguish what type of person he is … who Jesus made him to be. we said “Jesus made Graham  ________” to which he responded beautiful and big boy and happy.

in this world where we’re fed negativity and are led to believe false things about ourselves, i pray we’ve begun to affirm who our son is in Christ. we desire for him to be who God designed him to be. we are learning how to steward our time, money, home and our lives wisely … and we will do it together as a family.