Wednesday, January 16, 2013

The Bartis Bes

I made this last Christmas, I think.  I'd seen those cute signs with Family Rules. You know the ones I'm talking about.  "We do laughs.  We do love.  We do whatever else." Get the picture?

I wanted something more specific to us.  And I didn't want to pay a lot.  So, I used a Michael's coupon and made my own.  Of course, it doesn't look like it did in my head.  Nothing ever does.  But it's grown on me.

I get the most questions about "Be GOD's" and "Be for GOD".  It's important to us that we belong to GOD through our salvation.  But being for GOD is a different thing all together.

Being for GOD means living out his ways and purpose for our lives.  This is not easy.  Salvation is easy.  It's a gift of grace from a loving Father.  Being for GOD is a day by day, hour by hour, minute by minute decision.

The other Bes are things I felt are important to a well rounded person.  I mean, for real, life would be pretty boring without silliness.

The verse at the bottom is Jeremiah 29:11-12.  It's our family verse.  "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plan to give you hope and a future.  Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you."

It means that Ryan and I take control of our boys spiritual lives.  Last January, we started attending a new church.  The boys love going to C-Life.  Their friends are there. We used to meet in a movie theater and Brennan really loved that.  Two weeks ago, we moved into a new building. We are so excited to see the role C-Life plays in our boys' lives.

But it's not just church.  It's in our home.  It's the way we talk to the boys when they are in trouble. It's the way we show GOD's grace when they make mistakes.  It's teaching them to offer grace and love both to others and themselves.

Most nights we are able to eat dinner together.  Brennan's job is to say the blessing.  Then we have a family devotional.  It's called Sticky Situations 2.  The situations aren't all that sticky.  The boys always know the 'right' answer.  But it does open up the discussion of "Yes, that's the right choice but what are we likely to do?"

This year we are adding another step.  We are memorizing a Bible verse each month.  I found a calendar on Pinterest.  I enlarged January, printed and hung it on the fridge.  We say the verse together at dinner.  We're working up to memorizing our family verse.  We write prayer requests on the lines.  My favorite so far is "that Brennan will be less loud".

We also talk a lot about showing GOD's love.  Both to those we love and those we don't.  Sam's new cell phone has provided MANY great opportunities to discuss this.  Our cell phone rules reflect it.  We created the rules after the boys had had their devices (Zac's is Ryan's old phone with no service and a texting app).  It's hanging above their charging station.  It's a picture saved on their phone.  To me it was important for the rules to be on their photo roll so they had an out on peer pressure.  "Look dude, it's my mom's rules."

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