Last day of school. Clocking out at work. Locking up the store. The only thing on your plate is summer vacation and you're ready to devour it. The big question is: "Where are we going?" Because until you answer that question, you can't answer the rest:
- What clothes should I pack? A jacket for the Rockies or board shorts for the Bahamas?
- What sights should I see? The Golden Gate Bridge or the Eiffel Tower?
- How much money do I need? A few bucks for a nearby beach or a "break the bank" budget for a lifetime adventure?
The way you answer those questions depends on how you answer the first.
The same is true for your family. The destination you plot for your family will determine the answers to the smaller questions along your life journey. Just as every family's vacation plans are unique, so is your family unique. And for the best journey possible, you must begin by answering the question, "Where are we going?"
Joshua did. He uttered these famous words as his family settled in the Promised Land: "... choose this day whom you will serve ... But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord" (Joshua 24:14-15 NIV).
Joshua was not only a leader of a nation: He was the leader of a family. "Serving the Lord" would be his family direction that would guide them in everything they did.
Can you say the same? Or are you just winging it the best you can? Interestingly enough, we often put more planning into the family vacation than we do into the family vocation. A vacation is the time you take a break from something, namely work. A vocation is the special function of an individual or group. It's who you are, no matter where you are.
How do you discover your "family unique"? Here are three suggestions from Joshua.
- Gather your family together.
If you're single ... less scheduling. If you're married, plan a date night. If the kids are old enough, include them.
- Discuss the options.
Joshua mentioned other "gods" that could be followed. You may want to discuss different things that are important to your family. Just like deciding vacation destinations, laying out the life options will help in this decision too.
- Declare your decision.
Finish the statement, "As for me and my house, we will ..." However you finish it, declare it.
You may be thinking, "It's too late for me." "My kids are grown" or "We are too far off course." It's never too late. Did you hear what Joshua said? "... choose this day ..." Now is the time to decide. "Choose this day."
When you do, you can begin packing your bags.