This morning I was reminded of a talk by James MacArthur given at the 1999 BYU Education Week that I listened to years ago. Here's the link - Functional Families. And while I thought it had some great ideas for having a strong family, it helped me even more as a seminary teacher with my relationships with my students. In particular, #2 helped me realize that I couldn't make them stay awake and be happy to be in class at 6 AM, but that I could be prepared to do my part. I needed to re-learn that principle --one that I had learned years before when trying to put a 2-year-old to bed - I could make them stay in their room by sitting in front of the door or have miserable consequences if they made it all the way down the stairs, but I couldn't make them go to sleep!
The Functional Family: A Gospel Perspective
1. In a funtional family, there is a good, loving atmosphere.
2. In a functional family, parents are more interested in what they can offer to their kids than what their kids do with that offering. They act as guides and coaches, not as managers.
3. In a funtional family, parents intentionally parent. They meet together on a regular basis and talk about their kids and decide how they're going to handle things.
4. In a funtional family, parents are very aware of the messages that they're sending their children.
5. In a functional family, the basic human needs are met in the home. These needs are to feel significant, important, worthwhile and relevant.
6. In a functional family, relationships are of supreme importance.
7. In a functional family, parents are teachers. They plan what to teach.
8. In a functional family, parents have clearly defined roles and responsibilities that are mutually agreed upon.
9. In a functional family, parents give strong and confident leadership. They have a shared vision for the family.
10. In a functional family, mistakes are part of the learning process. The family keeps its head up and faces tough times together.
11. In a functional family, all family members play and have fun together.
12. In a functional family, the family is the gospel school.