About two years ago, the Hubs and I had a lengthy conversation about what we thought were the most important life qualities to impart to our children. Although this is a pretty open-ended question and could compel any number of answers, it was pretty much a no-brainer for us to agree upon our TWO MOST IMPORTANT. From that conversation, we unknowingly picked ourselves a family verse and determined a family mission statement. (This post contains affiliate links.)
Some might see a family mission statement as a bit militaristic. Perhaps you have visions in your head of our children being lined up like the VonTrapp family reciting a rather lengthy and litigious dissertation of "why we exist". This could not be further from the truth. The reality is, our mission statement is very short and sweet and has been lived out the past eleven years without our even realizing it. It is purposefully simple because, in truth, a mission statement is only useful if it is easy to remember and easy to implement. And with the eight and under crowd, simple means...well, about ten words or less.
The day we became parents, we began imparting God's truth and love to our children, some of which came by deed (our living out a Christ-like example as best we could) and some of it came in word (through explanation or correction of/for behavior). Eventually, with the help of The Original 21 Rules of This House, I put some of the truths of our household and how we are to treat each other on paper and began repeating short phrases to the children that expressed these ideas.
Our mission statement and family rules were written out a year ago and placed in my home companion notebook for easy reference. And here they are...
Matthew 22:37-39 Jesus replied: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself.”
We live to love God and love others.
Short Parenting Phrases/House Rules
- We obey God.
- We love, honor and pray for one another.
- We tell the truth.
- We consider one another's interests ahead of our own.
- We speak quietly and respectfully with one another.
- We do not hurt one another with unkind words or deeds.
- When someone needs correction, we correct him in love.
- When someone is sorry, we forgive him.
- When someone is sad, we comfort him. When someone is happy, we rejoice with him.
- When we have work to do, we do it without complaining.
- We take good care of everything that God has given us.
- We do not create unnecessary work for others.
Do you have a family mission statement?