“Successful Family:” What is it and what’s it Worth?

“Successful Family:” What is it and what’s it Worth?

By Rachel Allison

The successful family is a relative term, but I think we all recognize it when we see or experience it.

My definition of a successful family:  Everyone knows they are loved and valued.  All recognize their importance in the family.  Children are taught values that encourage selflessness and service.  Work is valued, and all are taught self-reliance.

My husband’s list is much more simple.  Our children can all quote their father’s oft-repeated counsel, “You can be many things, but true success comes from being “obedient, hardworking, honest, and kind.”

Some may judge the success or failure of a family by the way they all get along, however, I have read from several sources that the number of arguments in a family doesn’t necessarily determine the love and functionality of that family.  Rather the time it takes to resolve conflict and restore good feelings is a strong determinate.

Much to the chagrin of my dear mother I remember that a few of our sibling conflicts ended in bloody lips or noses.  I determined I wouldn’t allow my children’s disagreements to ever reach that level.  My solution?  When I recognized that the argument was reaching a level that could cause emotional or physical injury, I stepped in and always reminded the combatants that if they had the energy to fight they had the energy to work.  It only took weeding a flowerbed or cleaning a bathroom once or twice… after that it was amazing how quickly arguments could be resolved.  If my children learned to resolve conflict quickly, and without grudge or resentment…that is success.

Each mother and father must determine what a successful family is, and just what they are willing to sacrifice to obtain it.  Staying focused on that vision every day, and then working, communicating, loving and praying our way through the bumps and lumps of life, we will be much more likely to have the family we desire.  If we as parents have determined that vision of success wisely, it will be more rewarding than any other success we will achieve in our lives

 

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