George Bernard Shaw, “A happy family is but an earlier heaven.”
There’s no place like home when it is happy and healthy. The devil’s plan for family is to make life miserable and destroy people by splitting families. God’s plan for family is to help us build a happy and a sustainable relationship which can be our strength, a fortress in this world.
Proverbs 14:26 Whoever fears the Lord has a secure fortress, and for their children it will be a refuge.
Most of us have a family in Bangalore. If you are single, one day you will be a family. This morning if you don’t have a family, we want you to know that this church is your family.
Therefore, let see from the Bible how we can have a happy and healthy home?
We must understand that having a family is natural. It is natural that a boy and girl get married, children are born and so is a family. However, maintaining that relationship is the key. It takes effort to keep up the love than getting it. It takes work to keep the home atmosphere without diluting and polluting. And guess what, God is there to help us with this.
In this era where family roles and structure has changed drastically, the Bible still has solution to have a healthy and happy family.
Let’s open our Bibles to Psalm 127. It is believed that this Psalm was written by David to his son Solomon. David gives his son 4 things God can do for any family who turns to Him.
I. God can help me build my family.
Psalm 127:1 Unless the Lord builds the house the builders labour in vain. David isn’t talking about constructing a shelter or structure. He’s talking about establishing a family. In other words, if you want a home that will last and survive, then you’d better turn to the master home-builder: God Himself. God can help you build your family.
God formed the first family and told them to be fruitful and multiply. God instituted the family. He knows what will work and what doesn’t work. He can help fix whatever problem your family encounters.
Illustration: One day a couple was driving and they came across a youngster whose Ford model card had broken down. The couple stopped and the husband asked if he could take a look at the car. In just a few minutes, he had the car running. The youngster was amazed and said, “I’m impressed with your knowledge of cars, and I’m amazed that you fixed it so easily.” The man said, “I’m the one who designed it this car, I am Henry Ford.”
Dear people, that’s how it is with God and the family. God says, “I can fix it because I designed it!”
Somebody says, “Pastor, that’s nice to know but tell me how God can help me build my family?” God isn’t going to automatically transform us into a great family. God gives us the necessary instructions in the Bible and says, “Here’s what you need. Get to work. I’ll help you every step of the way.”
Principles of building a godly family.
1. Husband and wife.
a. Mutual Submission.
Ephesians 5:21 Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.
Ephesians 5:22 Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. Mutual subjection is a goal for both partners; however, in the marriage relationship God calls the woman to take the first step by having a submissive attitude towards her husband.
b. Mutual Love.
Ephesians 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.
Ephesians 5:28 In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.
Husband, what your wife need is love. In the marriage relationship God calls the husband to take the first step by having a loving heart towards his wife. As Christ is the head of church, husband is the head of the wife. What did Christ do? He first loved us.
Husbands are to pour out His love in abundance upon their wives. The more a husband loves his wife, the more the wife submits to her husband.
c. Mutual Respect.
Ephesians 5:33 However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband. Sister, what your husband needs is respect.
2. Parents train your children.
Proverbs 22:6 Start off your children in the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.
Deuteronomy 6:6-7 6These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. 7Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.
3. Children obey your parents
Ephesians 6:1-3 1Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. 2“Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise—3“so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”
When we follow God’s instructions in the family, God builds our family.
II. God can help me protect my Family.
Psalm 127:1b Unless the Lord watches over the city, the guards stand watch in vain.
What is a city? It’s a group of families who live close together. The word “watches” means to guard, protect, and save lives. David is saying, “God can help you protect your family.”
The family needs protection in today’s world. Yes, we need protection from buglers and dacoits, but we also needs protection from evil forces. The Devil would love to break up and destroy your family and when we work with God he helps us protect our family.
Enemy’s weapons against the family.
1 Corinthians 6:18 Flee from sexual immorality.
Exodus 20:14 You shall not commit adultery.
There is only one sin that can break the marriage bond in the eyes of God – and that is the sin of adultery. Immorality was the downfall of ancient Rome, Greece, Egypt, and Babylon. The devil will do everything he can to get you to be unfaithful to your spouse. But God can protect your family by helping a husband and wife remain faithful to one another.
How does this relate to single and young adults? Abstain from premarital intimacy. Hebrews 13:4 Marriage should be honoured by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral.
Philippians 2:3 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves.
This is Satan’s most successful weapon against the home. This “me first” mentality destroys the home from within. God can protect your family by helping you develop a Christ-like attitude: An attitude that puts the needs of your spouse and your children before you own.
Ephesians 5:18 Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit.
The alcohol bottle is a cold-blooded killer. It kills lives. It kills marriages. It kills families. According to the Annual Health Survey 2012 conducted by the ministry of health and family welfare, Nearly 62.5 million people in India drink alcohol with per capita consumption being around four litres per adult per year. For every six men, one woman drinks alcohol in India. India has also become one of the largest alcoholic beverage industries in the world.
If you have drunkard in your house, then you are housing a cold-blooded killer! In fact, you better off having a bugler as a house guest. At least he’d be quick to kill you- while the bottle takes it’s time in killing the consumer and the family. God can protect your family by helping you stay away from it.
God can help you protect your family – if you follow Him and obey His word.
III. God helps me provide for my Family.
God provides for our family through work. He expects us to do hard work and thereby provide for our family.
Psalm 127:2 In vain you rise early and stay up late, toiling for food to eat— for he grants sleep to those he loves.
Verse 2 describes two types of parents who try to provide for their families. The first father rise up early, comes back late and has less sleep at night because he isn’t content with what he has. He works long hours in order to provide his family with the luxuries of life.
The second father can sleep at night, not because he’s lazy, but because he’s content with what he has. He works in order to provide his family with the necessities of life – and he’s content with that.
Brothers and sisters, it is God who provides through our work but it takes wisdom to not be greedy and to be content. Don’t go for a promotion or a shift in job at the cost of your family.
Children don’t need lots of toys or costly gadgets. Children need a roof over their head, food on their table, and clothes on their back. More importantly, they need Your Time: Your attention, your affection, your presence, and your good example. They need to know that they are important to you, you love them, and you enjoy spending time with them.
Ecclesiastes 2:10-11 10I denied myself nothing my eyes desired; I refused my heart no pleasure. My heart took delight in all my labor, and this was the reward for all my toil. 11Yet when I surveyed all that my hands had done and what I had toiled to achieve, everything was meaningless, a chasing after the wind; nothing was gained under the sun.
If you can provide both the luxuries and time – then more power to you. But most parents have to make a choice. Don’t be like the first parent mentioned in verse 2. Be like the second parent and provide what your children need.
IV. God can help me raise My Family.
Psalm 127:3 Children are a heritage from the Lord, offspring a reward from him.
This verse describes the value of children: They are a heritage, gift, inheritance; not a hindrance; a blessing, not a burden. Dear people, there is no such thing as an unwanted child.
Some women say, “Children will cramp your style. They’ll keep you from pursuing your career and being somebody.”
Some men argue, “Children are too expensive. Children make a rich man poor.” Children don’t make a rich man poor. They make a poor man rich! Psalm 127:5 Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them. They will not be put to shame when they contend with their opponents in court.
Children brought up rightly are a blessing to us. That’s the value of children.
When should I start teaching values to my child – When they are young.
Psalm 127:4 Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are children born in one’s youth. When does a warrior influence his arrow the most? After he’s shot it? No, when he holds it in his hand. The best time to start teaching your child godly values is while they are very young.
Teach your child the Bible, bring them to church, and back your life with the word of God, and it will make an impression on their young hearts.
God wants to help you in your life and family. It is the Lord who builds, protects, provides, and rises our family. So we ought to look to God for our family. Joshua 24:15 But as for me and my family, we will serve the Lord.
The right place to build a life and a family is with Jesus Christ. So before you focus on building a happy and healthy home, you need to give your heart and life to Jesus.
All those who are saved I want you to pray this prayer, “Dear Lord, I love my family and I need you to help my family. I put you first in my life and I ask you to help me build, protect, provide, and raise my family.” Amen.