It is safe to assume that each of us come from families of one kind or another. The make-up of American families has certainly changed over the years but I have no doubt that though the dynamics have changed we want our family to be happy, healthy, faithful, and sane. Many parents and grandparents think and reflect how we can continually improve the dynamics of our families to perhaps increase the level of meaning and happiness we experience.
Bruce Feiler, in his book, The Secrets of Happy Families, shares this thought:
“Nearly a century and a half ago, the great Russian novelist Leo Tolstoy began Anna Karenina with one of the most famous lines in all the world of literature. “All Happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.” When I first encountered this line, I thought the first half, in particular, was inane. Of course all happy families are not alike: Some are large, some are small; some are boisterous, some are quiet; some are traditional, some are nontraditional.
Writing this book has changed my mind. Recent scholarship has allowed us, for the first time in history, to identify some building blocks that high-functioning families share; to understand the techniques effective families use to overcome challenges; to pinpoint the skills each of us needs to conduct ourselves more successfully in this most maddening of human institutions. Is it possible, all these years later, to say Tolstoy was right: All happy families do have certain things in common?”
As we quickly approach fall and the beginning of a new school year, we’ll spend the next five Sundays considering secrets to happy families in light of the Biblical witness. Sunday sermons will offer Biblical wisdom, relevant and practical family tips, all in light of The Secrets of Happy Families.”
If you want to know more, check out www.brucefeiler.com.
August 3 – How Agile is your Family?
August 10 – A Time to Eat
August 17 – On a Mission
August 24 – You Didn’t Just Say That
August 31 – Game On