Preaching About The Family

Preaching About Family

We are turning in this post from the series about keeping the cross in the center of your preaching (here’s the last one in that series) to preaching about the family in your church.  Many experts report that the nuclear family is in trouble in our world today.  I was pastoring in Southern California in the year 2000.  In that year more than 50% of the children in the public school system did not live with two biological parents for the first time in history.  In 2006 I moved to the state of Michigan.  Even here, a seemingly more stable group of people, I found that 32% of the children in our state live in a single parent family.

Now I am old enough to see my children and their spouses growing families while both parents are engaged in careers, and I realize anew that things have changed from my childhood.

The Changes That Call For Preaching About The Family in Your Church

When I grew up, it seemed like most of the popular television programs were about family.  Here’s a sampling

Ozzie And Harriet

Version 1.0.0

This program was on from 1952 to 1966.   This program captured the life of a real-life family.  Ozzie was the father, Harriet the mother, and their sons.  It was an amazing program in this sense:  Ozzie never worked.  He was always around to address every crisis.

Father Knows Best

This program ran from 1954 to 1960 and featured a father who always knew what to do.  Challenges were faced and solved in thirty minutes each week.

Leave It To Beaver

Each week, from 1957 to 1963, Beaver (the youngest son) created crises for the family, which included Ward, the father, June, the mother, and Wally the older brother.  June never worked outside the home, and wore dresses and a string of pearls to work around the family.  Each evening they all sat down together to eat dinner.  The phone never rang during that time, and they never had pizza delivery.  The table was covered by linens.

What’s It Like Today?

Let’s consider some statistics.  Here are the statistics for divorce.

Divorce Statistics

  • 1. There are over 900,000 divorces in the U.S. yearly, with over 2M marriages. …
  • 2. In the U.S., there is one divorce every 30 seconds, 108 per hour, and 2,600 per day. …
  • 3. About 42%-45% of all first marriages end in divorce

Two-Parent Incomes

Fewer families have a parent at home.  Here are the statistics for two-income families in the US.

53% of families are dual income with both spouses working full time.

School administrators talk about the difficulties of teaching children who are increasingly “free range children”.

Long time programs like the Scouts see declining enrollment.  Covid certainly contributed to this, but there are many other reasons.   The one I like best is that kids aren’t bored, so they are staying away while they play their electronic games.

It’s a Good Time To Be About Preaching About Family

So…it’s a good time to add preaching about family to your preaching schedule.  It will resonate.  However, it won’t be effective if all you do is to present a 1950’s view of family to your congregation.  Therefore, I am designing the next few blogs to a creative way to preach about family.  The basic theme will be:  How Not To Do Family Today.  Scripture gives us some epic failures to consider, and point out what went wrong.  We’re going to begin in the next post with the theme by looking at the family of Isaac and Rebekah from the book of Genesis.