The home as an airport

5 10 2010

Beckwith writes,

Today’s families struggle with the irregular and erratic schedules of various family members.  Dad and/or Mom maybe gone a significant part of the day, working to keep food on the table.  The evening meal is fast food in the car as families run to a variety of afternoon and early evening commitments.  These activities, which are probably good in themselves, can pull families apart rather than fuel closer relationships.  Because of this increased busyness on the part of all members of the family, children can lose out on face-to-face parental relationships.  As a result of this, the home is in danger of no longer being a haven of protection or a place of nurture.  Instead, it has become more like an airport where children and parents pass each other on the way ot their own individual activities (especially when the children are old enough to drive). (120)

The imagery of an airport is the perfect example of what is happening in so many homes in America today.  Airports are hubs of activity for people who are busily traveling from one location to another.  There is very little relationship developed in airports (unless you have a long layover).  Instead, airports are simply used to get on to the next thing.  Meals are not a priority at airports, instead travelers tend to wait in long lines for some undesirable food which they eat on the run.

This is certainly not the imagery that God would want us to use for the home and for spiritual development.  The home needs to be a location of nurture and love, not busyness and travel.  The home needs to be the place where relationship development is the greatest priority instead of each person in their corner surfing the Net and listening to iPods.  The home needs to be the place where families can stop, rest, and enjoy a meal together while they talk about the days events instead of eating on the run to catch the next event.

What a wonderful contrast that Ivy Beckwith has painted for us!  Let’s move away from the airport mentality and into the sanctuary mentality.  Let’s move away from having to rush and rush from event to event and instead allow for life to move a little slower and families to develop deeper relationships.

The events that people are engaged with throughout the week are not inherently bad.  But they can be pulling away from opportunities to deepen relationships with family members.  Families need the downtime together so that they can know each other on the deepest levels that God intended.  If an event or activity must be dropped in order to accomplish such a goal, please drop it!  The spiritual development of children’s lives is far more important than one more soccer game or one more more music commitment.  Let’s return to spiritual development and nurture in the home instead of the home being a hub to catch a flight to the next great event in the kids’ lives.




One response

6 10 2010

Today we are being buzzed by 747s testing at the local airport. How appropriate.

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