Upcoming Family Post, Dedications

I am working on a post concerning family life. I take a little longer with it because it is important. It is central to all that is happening and how to endure. It is about what God intends for us. Family is not just a Christian value: it is God’s blueprint of how He wants to live all of life. A healthy family is the absolute archetype of authentic Christian behavior and worship.

I have thought a lot on this because I am close to a bunch of families with children in Colorado. I was once a single parent of small children. Families struggle to keep things going, to try to build a life for their children, to make a joyful home, to live abiding love and keep fresh the spark of romantic love, even as they wrestle with dirty diapers, school assignments, fixing meals, refereeing squabbles, cleaning up messes, making a living, paying the mortgage…

Many of the dear families I am close to worry that they are so pressed that they do not live their faith and their devotion well enough. Most Christian contemporaries understand that these families are so pressed that they can’t fully live their devotions. My point is that that notion, held both by most families and other Christians, is exactly backwards.

It is in vibrant family life that Christian witness is most authentically, intensely and fully lived. It is the very blueprint of how we are all to relate to each other. It is the absence of full family life that is somewhat spiritually impoverished, I do not say that as criticism or in any pejorative fashion, simply as fact. An abundance of devotions, a single-minded focus on overtly religious themes is an effort to compensate for that impoverishment of not being able to live witness fully that is only possible within the context of active family life. I, myself, am past my family years – and so am somewhat impoverished in my worship and witness. It is usually the overtly devout that treat big families with some tolerance, cutting them some slack because they can’t fully live their devotions. I tell you, it is those who are in the heart, the sometimes chaotic heart, of active family who should look with tolerance on those who, lacking family, have only their devotion fall back on. Healthy, active, Christian family is authentic Christian worship and truth. I do not write this to insult anyone – and it is why I am taking my time. The lessons at the heart of this insight are crucial to building a fully Christian world, to authentic Christian renewal, to be the children God intends us to be. God gave us a blueprint of how he wants us to live. The family has been so corroded by modern deceptions that even Christians have it backward. This is what will allow us to endure, and so I work at it.

On days when I do not have a new piece ready, for the time being, I am going to print a piece from my old Abraham’s Journey Facebook Page that is useful.

About charliej373

Charlie Johnston is a former newspaper editor, radio talk show host and political consultant. From Feb. 11, 2011 to Aug. 21, 2012, he walked 3,200 miles across the country, sleeping in the woods, meeting people and praying as he went. He has received prophetic visitation all his life, which he has vetted through a trio of priests over the last 20 years, and now speaks publicly about on this site. Yet he emphasizes that we find God most surely through the ordinary, doing the little things we should with faith and fidelity. Hence the name, The Next Right Step. The visitations inform his work, but are not the focus of it. He lives in the Archdiocese of Denver in the United States.
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3 Responses to Upcoming Family Post, Dedications

  1. Mary says:

    Great encouragement


  2. Amy S. says:

    I can’t tell you what comfort this post brings me! The year before I married, Mother Mary gathered me up like the lost child I was and awakened in me my love for Christ and His Church. That following year, before our wedding, I was able to pray so many novenas, pray entire rosaries, and fast on bread and water 2 days a week, not to mention reading and reading everything I could get my hands on to catechize myself. Over the next 17 years, and 9 babies 16 and under, I have often felt like I am a failure because I don’t have the prayer life I did in the first years. Raising a large, homeschooling family takes all of me, but I take great joy in my marriage and children. Thank you for clarifying that authentic, Christian, family life is pleasing to God! I will remind myself of this the next time I fall asleep 3 prayers into the Holy Rosary 🙂


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