Establishing Healthy Family Routines

Feb 2, 2021

Establishing Healthy Family Routines

God designed Creation to operate on a schedule. We are part of God’s creation and as such are also designed to operate in healthy routine.

The Bible specifies that it is good to have set times for certain things; David praising in the morning (Psalm 5:3; 143:8), Daniel (6:10) “…got down on his knees three times a day and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as he had done previously.” Luke 4:16; “…as was his custom, he went to the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and he stood up to read.”
 
Routines allow children to feel safe, develop healthy habits and teach life skills and responsibility. The repetition of routines helps build a child’s confidence, experience and acceptance of what needs to be done to function effectively in life. A routine allows for a sense of security and mastery.
 
Many of us have emerged from the holiday season, where our routines took a break, and are back into the swing of our day-to-day lives. Now is the perfect time to examine our schedules and make a plan to establish healthy family routines that will draw us closer to God and a healthier family life.
 
Family life can be overwhelming and chaotic with so many different individuals and dynamics in a home. It is easier to just survive in these seasons and let our children set their own routines, often in unhealthy ways.
 
“A well-structured environment establishes routines to help the children develop disciplined habits. God is a God of routines; He is not a God of disorder. God has a purpose, and He works it out just as He wills (Eph 1:11)…
All children need routine and habits, and it is the parents’ responsibility to establish those early, as in bedtime routines, eating habits, care of the body, exercise, study habits, habits of personal hygiene and rest times (1Tim 3:4). Children need responsibilities such as household chores or care of family pets. All of these routines help develop godly character. As he matures, the child takes on more and more responsibility for maintaining this structured routine. These habits help the children to be better stewards of their time and to faithfully develop all their gifts and talents.” (S. Allchin, 2015).


Is the child leading how life runs in your home?

Or is the parent (appointed by God) leading the child by setting the daily routine?

Setting a routine for your family is a fairly simple task but it does require us to set time aside, demonstrate self-control and consistency.

Simple steps to create a family routine:

  • Examine your day – note what each family member is doing at each time of the day, identify problem times that need structure.
  • Brainstorm routine ideas – what do you need to prioritize in your family life? (Bible reading, a clean house, homework completed by dinnertime, relaxation, hygiene tasks, family playtime, prayer, etc).
  • Write it down – post your schedule where the family can see it and explain the new routine to each family member. Parents stay firm through opposition.
  • Trial the schedule for a week – let the routine guide your days for one week, help children check and follow the schedule with reminders.
  • Modify the schedule – After a week make any changes that are needed in the routine & update the visual reminder for all family members.
References: S. Allchin, (2015). Biblical Counselling Coalition


KATE GRAINGER
Being His Presence In Every Place