Gary's blog for couples and parents plus resources for individuals, leaders and churches.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Is Your Family Led or Driven?

I'll never forget a horseback ride I took once with my roommate in college. We had made our way over to the riding stables behind the school knowing that horses could be ridden for an hour or so. While I hadn't ridden a lot I knew enough to guide a horse, gallop a little and still have a good time. However, I must also admit that the majority of my riding has also been done with horses in a line going down a trail.

Nonetheless, the stables personnel saddled up two horses for us and sent us off into several large fields with access to a nearby road as well. What were they thinking?

We each gave our horse a slight kick and began to move letting the horses more or less saunter while we enjoyed some relaxed time.  Now and then we got them going a little faster but playing it safe knowing that we weren't exactly the Lone Ranger and Tonto.

Near the end of our ride we decided to leisurely come back to the stables using the small road since that seemed like an easier task. However, the horses had a different plan. Once they saw that we were headed back they immediately began to gallop full stride. And there was little we could do to slow them down much less stop them.

Thankfully we made it back unharmed but our hearts were racing when they finally slowed near the entrance.

Unforunately, a lot of families live life this way. Every day is a constant, non-stop gallop. Everyone is running from event to event, practice to practice, obligation to obligation. These homes are not being led or nurtured. They are just hanging on.

Is this your home?  Then let me suggest several things you might consider to slow things down, get life under more control and do more things that really matter.

First, stop some things. Take inventory and ask what you can cut out that is just more of the same, a needless addition or not really that essential.

Second, examine your priorities. Is your schedule being driven by greed, envy or status-seeking?  Are you just trying to have your kids as successful as the neighbors or other family members?  Perhaps they will be more successful at a sport or instrument.  But what is teaching them how to be a great person?

Third, rediscover rest and relaxation. Make time to do some enjoying things as a family, teach the value of sabbath or breaks and find an outlet to serve others.

Homes that are well-led find meaning and purpose in what they do. Homes that are driven?  They just feel like one more horse headed to the barn.
Gary Sinclair Writer | Speaker | Leader

Gary is currently a consultant, teacher, speaker and chaplain providing resources for families, leaders and churches.

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