Family faith-sharing tip:
Our families are different shapes and have taken different journeys for all kinds of reasons. Whatever journey your family has taken so far, you can still help your children to think about what they can choose to do to have happy and loving relationships in the future. Talk about the difference your faith has made to the way you understand and respond to the significant people in your family.
- Genesis 2:24
- God wants marriages to be special, loving, safe, secure, happy, caring, and close relationships between one man and one woman, for as long as they are both alive. God wants to work with us so that our marriages and families are the best they can be for every person in the relationship.
- Several pictures of men, and several separate pictures of women, each printed on thick paper (such as a magazine cover)
- Strong glue that sticks quickly and will tear the paper if you try to separate the pages once they’re stuck
- Magazines with pictures of families and couples
- Plain paper
- Paper glue
- Pens and pencils
- Thick paper cut into 2½-inch (5-6 cm) strips
What you do:
- If appropriate, talk about a couple your family knows who have been happily married for years. Imagine together about why and how this couple has such a good relationship.
- Then ask: What makes a marriage? Is it the wedding? The party afterwards? Is it love? Or having children? Etc…
- Read aloud Genesis 2:24 to see what it says about marriage.
- Take the magazine cover pictures of one man and one woman and join them together with strong glue to “marry” them. Leave the glue to set.
- While the glue is setting, have the children make a list or collage of magazine pictures that illustrates the things they would look for in a marriage partner.
- Then ask them to number each quality in order of importance—1 = most important quality, etc.
- Use this activity to talk about marriage and relationships; what you think are the important characteristics to look for in a partner; and ideas about how to keep relationships strong and happy for a lifetime of love.
- Take the pictures you stuck together and “married” and now pull them apart as if they are separating or divorcing. The pictures will tear, because when two people who have been stuck together are pulled apart, it hurts very badly. Imagine if they then become stuck to another person and they pull apart again.
- God wants us to be lovingly and happily married to one person for a lifetime because He loves us. He wants to protect us from the hurt that can happen when families break up. But even when they do break up, He loves everyone just as much, and He wants to comfort them and help them to be happy again.
- Make a long strip of paper and help each child write on it a prayer for themselves and their future relationships.
- Join the ends of the paper with tape, to make a ring around your child, leaving a space for a future unknown partner.
- Now pray a blessing on your child and his or her future partner, that they will both keep themselves safe and protected for each other.