Life can get crazy…we all know that. We are hit from all sides with clubs, sports, extracurriculars, parties, events, and more. –All great things, but when we find ourselves living moment to moment in the urgency, we sometimes find ourselves easily shifted and unsure of where the time went. We lose sight of some of the “bigger” things we wanted to instill in our kids, and things we meant to do never seem to get done.
Enter: Family Mission Statements
What it is: a relatively short, easy to read, timeless explanation of the things most important to you.
An Example –
Now, yours doesn’t have to look anything like mine. Yours should embody the things YOUR family holds dear. For me, I want my children to be kind, well-rounded, have a great relationship with God, hard-workers. Other things that are important in our home is that it is a place of love, peace, acceptance, integrity, honesty, growth, creativity, hospitality, kindness, compassion, and GRACE.
We, the SANDERS, seek to be a family who knows and loves God and others, through meaningful personal relationships, prayer, service, and example. Our mission is to create a home filled with adventure, compassion, grace, integrity, honesty, love, and peace so that we may be light-bearers and justice-seekers to this world.
It’s still a work in progress, but you get the idea, right?
Now, it’s your turn!
Here are some great questions to get you started. Sit down alone, with your partner, or as a family and brainstorm what’s important (big picture) to your family. In 18 years, what do you want to be able to look back and say? Ready? Here we go!
- What are three qualities important to you as a family?
- How would others describe your family? What do they see?
- What are 3-5 things you hope to accomplish as a family by the time your kids are 18 years old?
- What are our strengths as a family?
- We are at our best as a family when we…
- We are at our worst as a family when we…
- How do we want to resolve our differences?
- How do we as a family want to contribute to society?
- How do we want to connect to each other?
- Who are some families we admire and their qualities?
What to do with the ANSWERS –
Alright, so now what? You should have a random bunch of words, thoughts, and phrases, right? Still struggling? Have your spouse and/or kids write some things down, too. Then, at dinner, share your answers.
Look for THEMES. Look for overarching GOALS that are timeless. And, PRAY. You’ll narrow it down.
Next, WRITE IT DOWN:
- Our family’s mission is to create a place of… (What type of environment do you want to create?)
- …so that the member of our family can become…(How will this environment benefit your family?)
- in order to…the world. (How will your family benefit the world?)
This is a simple template, but by all means, follow your heart! Create a first draft, pray, and revise until it’s just perfect (for you!)
WHAT IT MEANS:
Sure, you can make a plaque and hang it in your home (which would be super cute), BUT, this is SO MUCH MORE! This Family Mission Statement can help us be intentional with our choices instead of just responding to the urgency of the moment. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to just be caught up in the moment by moment. I want to know that our moments matter! We only have so many!
For me, this means focusing on family moments that are teachable moments but also filled with love and hope. It means that I work harder to watch my mouth and be an example to my kids. It means that I do the hard things and we walk together as a family through the much with grace and compassion. It means sometimes saying no to the whirlwind of outside expectations that just fill our time but not our hearts.
So, my challenge is for you to create a Family Mission Statement and come back here and share it with me in the comments! If you have a blog, feel free to post it and link back here and then, post your blog post link in the comments so I can visit!
Love and Grace,