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'7 F's' connect family to life's purpose and God


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POSTED: Saturday, May 16, 2009

The family is ordained of God. I really believe that.

In 1995 the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints issued “;The Family: A Proclamation to the World.”; This declaration reminds us of principles that tie family to our purpose in life and to God. In our home we try to apply these principles. We found that a simple list of practical actions helps us successfully do so.

Our family refers to these as the “;Seven F's”;—family prayer, family Scripture study, family service, family fun, family home evening, family council and frequent temple worship. Our family tries to start and end each day by kneeling together in prayer. We take turns so every member can offer at least one prayer each week. We also strive to make time daily to read from the Scriptures as a family. Each member reads a Scripture verse, and then we talk about what that verse means. We continue reading until we complete a single page of Scriptures.

We also look for weekly opportunities as a family to serve others, and strive to have at least one weekly fun activity for the entire family. Those activities rarely cost much and often occur within the walls of our home, such as playing a board game or watching a DVD.

Our family home evening on Mondays consists of an opening and closing prayer, Scripture study, the singing of hymns and a short spiritual lesson. We take turns weekly so each one has an opportunity to teach. On Sunday evenings we also do our best to hold a family council where we review schedules and plan the week. In this meeting we ensure that we schedule the other six F's into the week, discuss important issues facing our family and solicit input from all family members in an effort to reach solutions to family concerns.

Frequent temple worship involves regular attendance at a nearby LDS temple.

We have found that these “;Seven F's”; help our family run smoothly, grow closer together, reduce unhappy surprises and draw us closer to God. Ultimately, our family is strengthened. We are happier because of it.

I am confident that this is pleasing to a loving Father in heaven. After all, families are ordained of God.

 

J. Alan Walker is president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Waipahu Stake.