Food isn't the only ingredient that makes a pleasant family meal. The mealtime ritual is important for both its social and nutritional value. "When everyone is apart during the day, it's frequently the only time to connect as a family. It's a time just to be together and to share with one another," says Janine Roberts, co-author of Rituals for Our Times (HarperCollins).
Whatever time you eat together, the same questions apply: How can we make the most of that time? How can we fill the time with laughter and open communication?
Start with these silence-busters. Have family members each:
|Tell one thing that happened to them that day that is both new and good.|
|Tell how they saw God at work that day.|
|Tell about their ideal vacation.|
|Tell about a family tradition they enjoy.|
|Talk about a mistake they made recently.|
|Complete the sentence, "I hope..."|
|Discuss the difference between natural talent and spiritual gifts.|
|Tell about their ideal meal and where they would eat it.|
|Answer the question: If you had a chance to spend all day with a famous person, who would it be?|
|Tell about the person they admire most and why.|
For more family mealtime ideas check out Focus on the Family's Table Talk by Mimi Wilson and Mary Beth Lagerborg. Cost is $9.99 from Word, Inc., 8800-232-6459, (604) 684-8333 (Canada).
Reprinted with permission from Children's Ministry Magazine, March/April 1995, p.54.
© 1998 by Orthodox Family Life and the original author(s).
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