Oh to be young again and live that care-free life. Living a life where it’s only you to take care of. Those days are all a blur for me now. Over 30 wonderful years of marriage to the same spouse, raising 3 children, 2 grandchildren (plus another one on the way), 3 different jobs, 2 different houses, 16 different cars, two dogs, one cat, lots of goldfish and several hamsters have been the highlights of my adulthood.
Providing for your family needs can be a very demanding task. Remember those days of juggling extracurricular activities when all three children had something going on the same night? Ensuring your children receive the proper education from grade school to middle school to high school and on to the wonderful years of funding their college or trade school education? Oh, and you also have a spouse that is just as important. As the famous 70’s slogan would say, “Calgon, take me away!”
Providing for your family is clearly outlined in the Bible and provides direction that should first be considered. 1 Timothy 5:8 warns that “if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for his immediate family, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.”
What does it mean to provide for your family? From my studies and mostly life experiences, there are three important areas that men and women should keep in mind in fulfilling their religious duty of providing for their families:
- Financial Support. The basic needs of the family include food, clothing, and housing; all should be adequately met. We are living in a changing world, with higher inflation costs and unemployment rising with employers sending all their work overseas. We all need to do whatever is necessary to provide for the basic needs for our families. It is hard for me to understand why some people fail to meet them. There are adults who are content with barely making ends meet, while others will needlessly squander everything they make, racking up unnecessary debt, and not meeting the needs of their families.
- Social Support. Consider developing family unity, an essential part of building a family with close and happy family bonds. Providing for your family is more than just “bringing home the bacon”, but creating a cohesive family unit. How many of you know men or women that spend all their time trying to advance themselves in their careers at the expense of their families? A lot of times leaving the kids home alone to grow up on their own, dealing with life’s issues with the advice from their friends. I have read, “A happy family life, with a loving relationship between husband and wife, and happy obedient children: this is providing for your family!”
- Spiritual Support. This is the most important support of the three. We are told to bring our children up “in the training and instruction of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4). We are to train up our children in the way they should go, so effectively that it will stick with them throughout their whole lives (Proverbs 22:6). It is our responsibility as parents to train our children in the area of spiritual knowledge. Find a church home and attend regularly with your family. Get your kids involved in youth activities, encouraging them to build friendships with other members of the youth group.
One last thought to consider for building your family unity. TURN OFF THE TV. Dust off those old board games, play cards, work on puzzles, have fun, laugh, and build those memories that your kids will remember for a lifetime. Eat dinner together at the table, discuss the events of your day, and provide spiritual guidance as necessary. Most of all, listen to your kids. Sometimes that’s all they need – a sounding board. Again, would you rather have your kids getting advice from their peers or from you?
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One thought on “How to Provide For Your Family (Guest Post by Glenn Donaldson)”
Well stated Glenn. The family is the central pillar of our communities, and if more peoople followed your three points, “What A Wonderful World This Would Be!”