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Thankfully, after talking to my wife, I realized that there is no better place to leave them BUT family! In this episode, I’ll share 6 benefits on family and why family is so important.
At the end of the show, I’ll also challenge you to do 2 things for your family.
But, first, let’s connect on Facebook. I’d love to hear what tips you have on living your own life better. You can find me at facebook.com/philipkdevine, and that’s Philip with one L.
All right. So, that’s probably not any kind of bebop music, but I’m going to make it bebop just for kicks.
So, like I said, this episode is on why you need your family, and I want to give you the back story of why this happened.
Just a few days ago, I was talking to my wife, Loretta, about leaving the kids with her and with her mother while I was out of town, and I was really having trouble with it because I felt guilty that I was leaving them behind while I was going somewhere for work. I felt like I was an unfit father because I had to do something for work to provide for my family yet I felt like I was leaving them. And then, I felt like I was abandoning them – like I was just dropping the ball and really just being a deadbeat dad for the simple fact that I had to leave them for a few days to leave for work. And, as I was talking to her, something kind of came up from my memory when I was younger.
So, when my mom was in school, going to pharmacy school, every summer, my sister and I would visit either my family in Germany for a few weeks or visit my dad wherever he was with the state department for a few weeks and, oftentimes, we spent the whole summer. So, back then, that was almost two and a half to three months away from my mom to visit other family.
And what that made me realize was that, when I was a kid in that situation, leaving my mom to go see other members of my family, I never felt abandoned by my mom, I never once thought that she was unfit because we were going to see family somewhere, and I certainly had no idea that she felt guilty, if she ever did feel guilty – I’m not sure if she did or not. But I just thought it was great because we got to go somewhere on vacation, it was exciting to see my grandparents and my cousins in Germany. It was exciting to go see my dad and my stepmom and my little brother and little sister wherever they were – in Egypt or Korea. It was always exciting to go see family.
And then, I thought even deeper; I thought to myself, “What about back in the day? Before airplanes were here, before cars were here, when no one really moved out of where they lived.” In those days, the saying that it takes a village to raise a child, it was true because everyone chipped in. And that’s kind of where I come to you with a few benefits – six, specifically – of having family. And, hopefully, they’re close by but, if not, just having them in your life and having a good relationship with them because it really does take a village to raise a child, and even if you don’t have kids, I personally believe family is extremely important.
So, let’s get started with the six benefits.
When we moved to Louisville here, my mother-in-law was also able to transfer her job and moved here with us, and that has been an incredible comfort to have someone close by. I mean, my sisters now were away, my mom is three hours north, but regardless, it was just nice knowing that someone was here immediately and someone we could trust and spend time with.
The third benefit – if you are a parent, you know what I mean – it’s your sanity. My wife and I have been able to maintain a date night almost every single week for the simple fact that we have family close by and we’re able to drop the kids off at Nana’s or Oma’s house and go on a date, and the best thing about it is the kids are excited to go and they usually don’t want to come back and see us.
So, it’s kind of a win-win for everyone. Loretta and I get time together, the kids get time with their grandparents, and their grandparents, of course, love to spend time with their grandkids so it’s really a blessing.
If you’re anything like me, you think your mom did a great job raising you and you don’t see any problem with them imparting some wisdom onto your grandkids while you’re gone, and it’s just so freeing and relaxing to call my wife and say, “Hey, babe. We’re going on a date. Nana has the kids. Let’s not even worry about it.” And, to be honest, we don’t worry about it. We relax and it’s a great time. They are a great influence on children.
One of the things that my wife and I have learned about moving around so often is that what makes it easier is having a support network almost immediately, of having a friend to call up and say, “Hey, let’s go get coffee this morning,” or “Let’s have a play date,” or like I said, having family close by, “Hey, sis! We’re going to come by there and let’s just have a nice lunch together.” And that is so important on acclimating to where you are and supporting your whole mission as, you know, a mother and a father, to raise your kids, and even if you don’t have any kids, to hold you together as a couple. You have support there, people that want to see you succeed, and get ahead in life.
In fact, I’m going to tell you how special it is to have family. We lived in Dallas; we moved to Louisville in June, I should say, and we moved from Dallas, and one of the primary reasons we moved was so that we could be closer to family. So, now, here in Louisville, we have my mom three hours away, we have my sister an hour away, and we have my mother-in-law and my sister-in-law living in the same apartment complex – she was able to transfer her job. So, I mean, it’s an incredible blessing to have family close by and I didn’t realize it initially until I had kids. But, now that I have kids, I understand that family is so vital.
So, I want to throw out a quick disclaimer though. Not every family is the same. Like I said, there’s broken families, there’s blended families, and every other kind of politically correct way to say there’s family. And, family, I think the term “family” means drama and love. You know, my mom described family this way – when you attended church, you make the decision to attend the church not because they’re nice to you or they’re mean to you, but you make a commitment to that church and that church becomes your family. And, since they’re your family, you stick with them through thick and thin, good or bad.
But there’s two things that I want you to get from this podcast. You know, there are six benefits: there’s someone you trust, there’s someone to teach us, there’s the parent sanity if you’re a parent, there’s the influence family has on children, there’s the support, and then there’s the love that’s always there.
But there’s two things that I want you to do in regards to your family.
The first thing is give forgiveness. If there’s someone in your family – and I can almost guarantee that there’s someone in your family that you don’t get along with or there’s just bad blood, they have done you wrong – call them, Skype them, drive to their house, and ask for forgiveness. It is so powerful to ask for forgiveness and I think it’s more important than giving forgiveness.
But, of course, the second thing I want you to do is give forgiveness. Who is someone in your family that you can call and say, “Look, you know, you did me wrong. I didn’t appreciate it; it really hurt me. But I forgive you because I love you and you’re my family.”
So, two things I want you to do: go ask forgiveness to someone in your family that you’ve done wrong and then the second thing is go give forgiveness to someone who has done you wrong. And, if you haven’t experienced these six benefits of family, I promise, if you do those two things, you will start seeing those benefits almost immediately, and it is such a relief. It’s a weight off your shoulders to have your family around you and to really be able to connect and relax in that love and that environment, and that’s why you need your family. That’s why I need my family. I think that’s why everyone needs their family.
So, a question I have for you that I’d like you to comment on in the show notes is: what have you found most valuable in your family? I know that you may not have the best family, but I want you to really try and find one or two positive things that you can tell me about that you find most valuable in your family.
To comment on this episode, go to my blog at philipdevine.com/episode04.
And, finally, my next podcast topic will be on the important of rest.
And, of course, if you have a question about this topic or anything else, please leave me a voice message at philipdevine.com/podcastquestion. This is a great way to cross-promote your blog or website because I’ll link to it in the show notes.
Well, that’s it for this episode of Live Life Better.
I want to say thanks to my buddy, Justin Medley, for making this podcast sound amazing. You can visit him at reverbnation.com/justinmedley.
I’d be grateful if you’d rate my podcast on iTunes – that helps tremendously with keeping my podcast visible so people who have never heard it can discover it. and, if you’ve already done this, thank you so much. I really appreciate it.
If you’d like to comment on this episode, please go to philipdevine.com/episode04. Go to the show notes for this episode and scroll down to the comments section. I would love to hear from you; comment, question, whatever.
I would also love to come speak at your church or organization. To find out more about the topics I cover and to contact me, go to philipdevine.com/speaking.
Until next time, remember; use every day to live life better.