Where Did Family Come From?

We are at an interesting and perhaps unprecedented time in history when our understanding of family is being confronted and our definition of family is being rewritten. The social norms of Western society and the laws of Canada are changing fast. Things that only a generation ago were considered inadvisable, immoral, or just plain evil are now considered good, normal, and worthy of celebration. Things that not long ago were considered the mark of a crumbling society are now considered …

Leave and Cleave Like a Strawberry

Living in a multicultural city and serving in a multicultural church has given me a wide view of some of the ways different generations of a family can relate to one another. As a young generation begins to pair up and to marry, forming new families, they need to learn to relate to the generation or generations that came before. This can take many different forms and I’ve long observed that the most significant determining factor is usually culture. We …

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What Is a Family, Anyway?

What is a family? It’s a simple question, but one that is surprisingly difficult to answer. I suppose it may be easy enough if you ask it in only one place and to only one kind of people, but I live in Toronto, the most diverse city in the world. One Sunday I went around my church asking, “What is a family?” I spoke to people who have immigrated from several different countries across several different continents and the answers …

How Many Loves Have You Experienced Today?

“Love is a many splendored thing,” says the old song. Love has many hues, many shades, many facets. Love has many features to observe, many marvels to behold. There is so much to love that none of us can ever experience it in all its forms. Not even close. Yet while none of us can ever experience it in all its forms, we really do have the pleasure of experiencing it in many of its forms. Do you ever pause …

What’s the Purpose (and the Benefit) of Family Devotions?

What’s the purpose of family devotions? Probably no habit or discipline is so lauded, recommended, or even commanded among Christian families than this. But what’s the point of it? What is it meant to accomplish? Over many years of leading family devotions, I have been surprised to learn that it’s both more and less than I had expected. As Aileen and I began building the habit of family devotions, first as something that followed dinner and later as something that …

10 Ideas and 10 Tips for Family Devotions in 2019

A new year is just about upon us, and as it dawns, we have a new opportunity to lead our families in devotions. Whether you’ve been utterly consistent or mightily struggling, here are 10 ideas and 10 tips that may help as you consider the year to come. Ten Ideas for Family Devotions Just Read the Bible. This is the simplest suggestion of all: Just read the Bible a book at a time. Younger children tend to do best reading …

Why We Chose a Christian College

Two of our children are still in the public school system, yet our son is attending a Christian college. A reader wrote and asked us about that decision. Here is my answer.  Transcript As you know, I get lots of questions in and love to answer some of the ones that come from people who read my articles or who watch my videos. I got one recently I thought was actually quite interesting. Someone was saying, why is it …

Raising Our Children To Be In But Not Of The World

Parenting is tough. One of our greatest challenges is to raise kids who are able to exist in this world while not being of this world. A reader recently asked for some thoughts on this, and here’s what I had to say. Transcript I wonder if you’ve ever thought about what it would be like to raise children in a perfect world. Think about God creating Adam and Eve to live in a perfect world, free from sin. They were …

Do Your Children Play Video Games?

Parents often feel guilty about how much time their kids spend playing video games and they sometimes have questions about whether their kids should play them at all. When I speak on issues related to families and technology I’m always asked to addresses kids and their games. I take a shot at doing that here. You can purchase the Circle device mentioned in the video here. Transcript Over the last few weeks, I’ve had a bunch of opportunities to speak …

It Takes a Church To Raise Your Child

You’ve probably heard it said that it takes a village to raise a child. Parenting is so difficult, so complex, so relentless, that it is more than any two people can successfully handle. Children thrive under the responsibility of loving parents but also under the watchful eye of a caring community. I have always believed in the wisdom of this proverb, but I’ve come to appreciate it even more as my kids grow older. And as I’ve come to appreciate …