Deuteronomy 24:5 states God’s concerns in establishing a new marriage: “If a man has recently married, he must not be sent to war or have any other duty laid on him. For one year he is to be free to stay at home and bring happiness to the wife he has married.” (NIV) This instruction protected the relationship from outside pressures and allowed time for the marriage to be strengthened.
Psalm 128 has been called “The Marriage Prayer.” It was often sung at Israelite weddings:
“Blessings on all who reverence and trust the Lord.on all who obey him!
Their reward shall be prosperity and happiness. Your wife shall be contented in your home. And look at all those children! There they sit around the dinner table as vigorous and healthy as young olive trees. That is God’s reward to those who reverence and trust him.
May the Lord continually bless you with heaven’s blessings as well as with human joys. May you live to enjoy your grandchildren! And may God bless Israel!” (TLB)
Many other references can be found in God’s word pertaining to the family and family values.
A nation’s strength is directly related to the family’s strength. The Bible calls children blessings and a “heritage from the Lord” (Psalm 127:3-5). Sadly, many children today are deemed an inconvenience and are neglected, abused or destroyed in the womb. Surely we realize children hold our future. Our future will be bright or not, depending on the family and its values. The family is where children are molded for life.
God’s values for the children and for all of us include love, integrity, honesty, godly training and prayer. Studying God’s word and obeying it makes a family the best it can be.
The children feel safe and secure because godly parents lead by example. They train their children in devotion and praise. They pray with their children and those experiences will remain a lifetime. Blessings follow godly families.
“The father of the righteous shall greatly rejoice: and he that begetteth a wise child shall have joy of him” (Proverbs 23:24). A child’s home can be heaven or hectic! Passing on a godly heritage insures future generations.
Strong godly families are a nation’s greatest resource, providing leadership, encouragement, counsel, loyalty and faithfulness. Who would want to be all kinds of trouble to a family with selfishness, anger, malice or pain?
Next to God, family is all that matters in this world. We all need each other. We need to feel love, acceptance and value. That is how it is in God’s family too. Because of his infinite love, through Jesus’s sacrifice, we are brought into the family of God. God has given us his best gift, his son. To those who accept this beautiful gift, forgiveness and eternal life are the rewards. We then become members of God’s family.
My children and grandchildren were home for the recent holiday. When they all come home I am so happy. With full tummies, the long legs of the men in my household sprawl across the den carpet. We bask in our family’s presence and hold on to each moment. The days go by quickly and all too soon they must leave. I don’t cry anymore. I now realize that in God’s family, no one says “good-bye” for the last time.
Godly families are forever!
Portales resident Joan Clayton is a retired teacher and published author. Her e-mail address is:[email protected]