The Days are Long but the Years are Short

Family is one of the greatest gifts that we have on earth which is why we should all make our family one of our biggest priorities. The two statements that became the North Star for Andy Stanley's marriage was that he and his wife wanted to create a family where "we enjoy being together when our kids are gone" and "we want our children to want to be with us, and each other, when they don't have to be."  Once they have grown up and moved out they want them to genuinely want to come home.  With those two statements being their guiding star, he mentions five things to make sure that you are making your family matter:

1) Don't give up what's unique to you.  You can find another friend or even another spouse, but you as a parent is the only unique role you have in life.  Your greatest contribution may not be what you do, but who you raise. 

2) Discipline your kids with the relationship and their well-being in mind, not your reputation.  Don't be the Dad at a soccer game yelling at your kid because you worry about how his performance makes you look.  

3) Prioritize your marriage on your calendar. If it's important, it needs to be on your calendar. 

4) Learn how to say no for now, but not forever.  There are certain things that you have to sacrifice now while you raise your family, but that doesn't mean those things are gone forever. 

5) Eating at home together is one of the most important things you can do as a family.  Make this and the connection that goes with it a priority.  

When it comes to raising a family it is easy to get caught up in the day to day and forget how grateful we should be.  Just remember that even though the days of raising kids are long, the years are short.   

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