The African Forum on Religion and Government (AFReG) calls on all Christians to increase our prayers as a faith community dialoguing on “African Identity, Dignity and Justice in the 21st Century.” This Tuesday, October 27, 2020, our theme is “The Family of God.”
The Family is the most important unit of society. Dysfunctional families result in failed societies. It is therefore of utmost importance to have a clear and commonly owned understanding of the concept of family. This should be followed with guidelines and resources for building healthy and effective families.
The first and most important unit of the nuclear family is the husband-wife relationship. This must be characterized by reciprocal unconditional love. Both partners must be committed to facilitating the development of the other to reach their best potential and accomplish their highest dreams. The Bible is clear on this.
Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ. …
Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. …
Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her … (Ephesians 5:21-27)
Marriage is the laboratory for learning how relationships work. Seeking to influence the world without first building enviable loving relationships is a misplacement of priorities that will ultimately prove expensive for societies. When marriages are healthy, parents can raise children who develop in every sphere of their lives and become responsible members of society. These young ones will have the sound mindsets and values needed for leading transformation in broader society.
It is an interesting consideration that a lot of leadership and management training is to make up for the failures of parents in raising healthy young leaders for society.
The second priority in the family is to raise children with the right mindsets, values and sense of responsibility. This is also clear in Scripture.
These commands that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. (Deuteronomy 6:6, 7)
The health and functionality of the nuclear family is the right model and instrument for influencing the extended or broader family.
Here is an important question for leaders:
What shall it profit leaders if they gain all they can in their professions and yet lose their families?
Hardly will you meet someone who regrets not making more money for businesses they worked for when they have very healthy and supportive families. There are however too many leaders who are popular with the public and yet are in pain when they ponder over the failures in their families. They truly regret not giving more time and attention to their families when they could.
- Pray for leaders in Africa to prioritize succeeding in the family over all other ventures.
- Pray that families in Africa become increasingly godly, healthy and effective.
- Pray that African societies will have commonly owned understandings of the DNA of the nuclear family, and the means to building healthy and effective families.
- Pray that healthy and effective families will be the foundation for African nations.