God created the world with a regular rhythm: The tide of the ocean, the seasons, sunrise and sunset and high noon in-between. In the regular rhythm of life, find ways each day and each week to connect heartstrings with your child time over time over time.
The need to eat creates a great opportunity to invest in your relationship with your children.
I have wondered if God created us humans to eat so that we would pause, enjoy his bounty, and build community and heart connections.
When your children were babies, you are forced join them at each of the feedings – and there are lots of them. I think God did that to bind our hearts as parents to our new babies.
But when they become teenagers, catching them at meal time becomes a bit tougher. Soccer practices, dance rehearsals, taekwondo, play dates, and other scheduling conflicts make family mealtime seem like a thing of the past. Suddenly, we're feeding our pop tarts during the morning commute, sneaking 100-calorie packs for lunch, and grabbing dinner at the drive-thru window.
Research shows that dining together is more important than you might think. You’ve probably heard many of the stats: less likely to be overweight, perform better academically, and have a better relationship with their parents. But my all-time favorite is: “People think you are a better cook—and a better person—if you serve vegetables at dinner.” (Cornell University Food and Brand Lab)
Summer is a great time to gather around meals to invest in your relationships, and have the added bonus of being gaining a little veggie induced respect!
Include your family in coming up with fun ways to gather for summer meals.
Make a list of fun summer treats you can make together.
Share some summer kindness by taking ice cream or a homemade summer treat to a shut-in or a new family in town.