The next generation has discovered Family Feud. Do you remember that show? I remember watching it with my family when I was a child. Last weekend my daughter discovered it while visiting a family member and my daughter who had a REAL TV. (We have been cable free FOREVER, so when we visit our family members our daughters always refer to TV at the REAL TV!). The REAL TV was full of interesting shows last weekend and Family Feud was the most interesting.
I was busy doing something else while she was watching it until I saw the first red X flash up on the screen. Then I was totally engaged. I remembered that there were three red X’s available to each family. After those three, they lost. Three chances to guess the best words for the category. This particular category was “Tell me ways in which the family dog can annoy you.” I won’t give you the answers here.
But those three X’s have been helpful in our tent all week. One morning while getting ready for our day, my sweet, adorable husband made an unnecessary comment about something I forgot to do (I never, ever claim to be perfect!). I quickly threw up my hands and formed an X. I informed him that he only had two more before the day was over…and it was only the morning. I then had to remind him about Family Feud and the three X’s. He caught on quickly. It wasn’t long before he threw up his arms into a big X and reminded me that we were now tied.
I know we all try our best to treat everyone in our tent with kindness, love and respect. That is our goal. But some days when we are tired, stressed or overwhelmed, we tend to do more harm than good. We say words that deserve a big red X. We complain about small things that do not matter in the big picture. We travel down the road of negativity not realizing that we are traveling it alone because everyone else is exhausted from listening. That too deserves a red X.
“Pleasant words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body” (Proverbs 16:24). Our words have power to make our relationships sweeter. We know the right words to use to build each other up. We know how to avoid those words that cause the big red X’s to flash up on our screen of life.
Here’s a challenge for your family this week. See how many ways you can bring sweetness to your tent through your words. See how you can bring health into your relationships. See if your choice of words helps you to avoid family feuds within your home. And remember, GRACE. As much as we try, we will always make mistakes and say something that deserves a big red X. Our families are the best place to practice giving and receiving grace. Grace and forgiveness remove any X’s that exist in our relationships. Before you begin the challenge, take a moment to exchanged grace and give forgiveness to erase the X’s that have already been played. That way everyone starts with a fresh beginning.
Love your family, don’t feud. – Al Roker (2008)
From our Happy Tent to yours,
P.S. Grab your neighbors this Memorial weekend and play Family Feud. Here are some questions to get you started.