It's Time for Family
Family occupies most of our lives and all of our lives we are a part of a family. If we look back over the years when we were children, and as we were growing up, we might be surprised just how much our family has impacted us, for good, and sometimes not so good. Our habits, holidays, memories of family meals, household smells, grandmas and grandpas all form a huge impact on who we are.
For most of us many years have passed since then and now we are the parents raising our own children and families. Eventually we begin to understand our parents and how the things that once seemed strange or annoying to us when we were small are really just a part of everyday life. Raising a family has never been an easy task and the modern world presents its own daily challenges to both parents and children.
Be a Dad, Be a Mom Today
Today we hardly ask which parent will go to work or who will stay at home with the children. For most of us both parents need to work outside the home to support a family. There are schools to pay for, mortgages and more bills than we know what to do with. And where do we turn for a moral, biblical or spiritual education of our children when the reality is that many of us hardly have a chance to have a meaningful conversation with our children during the day. An Israeli parent spends on average about 14 minutes a day with his or her children. Do we even know our children? Are we available to meet their needs? Are we even listening to them?
With all the loads, pressures and demands of modern living we may be missing the best years God has given us to be parents for our children. What does it even mean to be a mother today? Be a father? How do we do it?
Not a simple task in a world that presents many options, opportunities and alternatives for young people. And although Israeli society is still considered "family-friendly" in many ways, we are witnessing a rapid increase in divorce, couples living together without marriage, multiple abortions and other trends that are breaking down the family unit.
That is why it is essential that our faith communities provide real support to families. We must do all that we can to educate and prepare the younger generation for wholesome family life and support existing families in their struggle to survive.
Israel is not a country that encourages faith in Jesus the Messiah. It is not easy for our children being the only Messianic boy or girl in the whole school. We do not have freedom to express our faith in the general public. Our youth can feel isolated and face many temptations: nightclubs, alcohol, drugs. Every weekend they have to decide again, "Where am I going? What will I do? Go to my Congregation? Spend time with my family?"
This is why we are investing so much of our efforts in activities for children and family. Our faith community provides leadership, coaching and support appropriate for every age level. We give our families bible-based instruction with real-life examples of how a family functions. We are here to support families in crisis.
If the family is something that is close to your heart and...
... you feel and understand the need to strengthen the family, please adopt us in your prayers. If you want, we will be happy to give you the name of a family that you can pray for regularly.
We are also trying with our own limited resources to pay the salaries for the educators and leaders in our community that serve our children and families. Sadly, this year we have come up short and we stand before a crucial decision. While we want to continue these services to our families, we will not be able to continue with financial support.
Our community is blessed with many first generation Messianic Jews, those that came to faith in Israel and others who moved here leaving behind family and friends. For most the community of believers is the only family they have.
Thank you for your help.
Coordinator Children and Family Ministries
Beit Immanuel Congregation