Family Dinner Strengthens Family Bonds

For centuries Jewish families have experienced the blessing of “Sabbath” and today millions across the globe are enjoying this time honored Jewish custom of Friday night dinner with the family. Of course non Jewish families are not attempting to follow religious Jewish traditions,  but rather emulating the spirit of the event. Studies show that families who weekly have dinner together experience tighter bonds and tend to be much more spiritually connected.

In a recent Time Magazine Health Science article researchers have found, “the more often families eat together, the less likely kids are to smoke, drink, do drugs, get depressed, develop eating disorders and consider suicide, and the more likely they are to do well in school, delay having sex, eat their vegetables, learn big words and know which fork to use.” Our modern culture has robbed the family of its dignity and sanctity. Being over stimulated by television, internet, video games and mobile phones it is obvious  why most have a difficult time in developing family bonds. A recent world campaign called, “Turn Friday Night Family Night” has inspired millions to take the challenge to transform their family.

That’s why “Turn Friday Night Family Night,” which aspires to have 3 million families signing up at FridayIsFamily.com by December 2009, is all about rooting out any and all electronic distractions so that one night a week, at least, children and parents can be heard. This was the gift that was given to me as the child of a family that Sabbath observant. But the full focus of parents on their children, for at least one night a week, should be the birthright of every boy and girl, not just the Jews, the Amish, and the Seventh Day Adventists.” {Rabbi Shmuley Boteach Author of Shalom in the Home Posted: November 24, 2009 The Huffington Post}

TIP: Schedule your week around the Friday evening meal. At first it will seem to be a bit contrived if this has not been the practice of your home. Plan the dinner and set the table as if you are having special guest. Have a definite start time. Start the meal with thankfulness for the food. The parents should take time just before eating the meal or during the meal to bless the children. Letting them know how much they are appreciated. Take a moment to speak of their positive attributes. Share with each child your desire for their success. Make sure to interact with each other, laugh and have fun. This time should be the highlight of the week.  After the meal spend time playing games, singing kariokie or any other thing that the family enjoyes together. Once you put this into practice you will find that the facts support themselves. Family dinner strengthens bond and better prepares your children for the future. For more information on this subject visit www.fridayisfamily.com.

©Rod Bryant

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