Creating a Family Mission Statement

After months of working to combat negative attitudes, difficult family situations, and other struggles, I am excited to share with you how we are reshaping our family values — from the foundation up. 

Brian and I have a simple goal as parents: to raise godly children who are equipped to fulfill their unique purposes in life in a moral, loving, and Christian way. Nothing to it, right? 

Unfortunately, our current “entitlement” society makes that very difficult. Acquaintances, and even friends and family live and act in ways that suggest we owe them what they want: time, money, attention, gifts, whatever. And we buy into it because to go against the norm is way tougher than, well… not going along. 

Most people — me included — don’t want to disappoint others. We want people to like us. We want them in our lives. We want to be “normal,” whatever that is.

The truth is, though, you can never please everyone. And if you try, you end up disappointing yourself. God wants us to live our individual missions. Whether that mission is to cure cancer or raise a baby, it is important to Him, and it deserves to be recognized and respected.

Raising great kids in today’s society can be a challenge, but it is not only possible, it is certain with prayer and focus

That focus began for us when we sat down together and prayerfully created our own “Family Mission Statement.” 

Here’s how we did it:

  • Brian and I sat down and talked about what we value:
    • faith
    • honesty
    • trust
    • learning
  • We talked to the kids about what we {all of us} hope our family looks like in 20 years when we gather together for the holidays:
    • We want to be happy to see each other {siblings, spouses, children, grandchildren — whomever the future holds in wait}.
    • We want to play games, toss balls, chat happily, share successes, and mourn failures all  together.
    • We want our relationships with one another to be strong, loving, patient, and blessed.
    • Overall, we want to know that our family is there to offer unconditional love and support.
  • Finally, we wrote down our Mission Statement:

We, the Kessler Family, will love, support, and be united with one another. We are committed to building an atmosphere of trust, faith, and learning in our home. We spread love and happiness to others. We know that, as Catholics, we are loved and need to love in return. We share God’s love and the example of Jesus Christ with others. We have patience and wisdom in our relationships. We each have a purpose to our lives and work hard to fulfill that mission

We are diligent, honest, helpful, kind, perseverant, selfcontrolled, gentle, patient, content, obedient, attentive, and forgiving. 

Now we try to filter everything we do and everyone we spend time with through the lens of our mission statement. We ask ourselves if the choices we are making will help us get to  that holiday gathering we envision in 20 years. 

  • Does fighting with your sister spread love and happiness?
  • Is grumbling about your schoolwork building an atmosphere of learning in our home?
  • Are you demonstrating obedience when you tell Mom you’ll do your chores later? 
  • When you take your brother’s Lego minifigure, are you building trust with him?
  • Is talking back and showing attitude sharing the example of Jesus?

While it won’t solve all of our struggles, instantly guarantee that we’ll have fabulously well-behaved kids, or keep others’ attitudes of entitlement from turning our own gratitude into want, we have a place to build from. Our family’s mission statement gives us that foundation we so desperately need; roots from which to grow

If you’re struggling {even if you’re not}, considering sitting down with your family and talking about where you see yourselves in the future. Pray about how you can ensure you get to the point of watching your daughter bounce her brother’s child on her knee. Build your own foundation–come up with your own Family Mission Statement. 

The focus it brings is so worth the time you put in. 

Our “reshaping” kicked off to a great start with our mission statement, but our family was still struggling to pull together, so we tackled household chores next. Come back tomorrow to find out what we’re doing to make sure each of our kids — ages 9, 5, and 3 — have an active part to play in our household, and how to get your kids to share in the responsibilities being a family brings

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Have a great Monday,