What do Ministries, Fortune 500 companies, and your family all have in common? Vision. The challenge each face is to identify, communicate, and live out that vision.
While Ministries and businesses spend thousands of dollars to establish the proper vision statement, parents too often do very little to communicate an adequate direction for their families.
A vision statement unifies a team, and provides the momentum needed to create goals that will fulfill the vision.
Take football for example: Every player for an NFL team has a clear vision to win the Super Bowl. To the degree that a team succeeds in the goals they set, that will be the degree in which they will succeed in fulfilling their vision.
Families need to learn to operate in the same way. In today’s culture our teens are without direction. The lack of direction in their lives is too often due to a lack of vision within the home. I touch more on this in my eBook America’s Youth Culture Manifesto.
How can parents provide their family with a clear purpose in life? One way is by working together, as a team, to develop a vision statement.
Identify: First, your family must identify 3-5 objectives that your family wants to achieve. This should be a fun family occasion. Intentionally schedule a time for your family to develop your objectives.
Grab some sharpie markers and sticky notes and have your children write out objectives they would like to achieve in their life. Each sticky note needs to contain a single objective. Then, place all the sticky notes on a wall. Depending on the age of your child, their objectives will be more or less coherent; but, the goal is to help them learn to communicate what is important to them.
Next, categorize, identify, and agree on 3 to 5 main objectives for your family. Some examples could be character, relationships, worldview, career, or education.
Communicate: Once you have identified 3 to 5 objectives, record them and post them in a prominent location. The refrigerator is always a good place. Then, tell your kids to pray for the list and set a follow up date to finalize the vision statement.
Next, as the parents, you need to develop the actual vision statement using the 3-5 objectives your family identified. This should be done by the husband and wife without the help of the kids. In general it should be between one to two sentences long and easy to communicate.
Once you are comfortable with a vision statement that represents your family’s objectives, spend a family day and communicate your vision in creative ways. An example could be going on a hike as a family. As you hike the trail, pause periodically to talk about the vision statement. No matter how you do it, make a day of it and make it unforgettable.
Finally close the event off by providing your kids with a personal tangible item that has the vision statement written on it. In addition, find a prominent place in your home to post it – i.e. your living room mantle, dining room, etc.
Live Out: Now comes the hard part. Make a commitment to your kids, and a covenant to God, that you are going to model the vision every day. Every obstacle and decision your family faces will be filtered through the vision statement.
To the degree that your family identifies, communicates, and lives out its commitment to a family vision statement, that will be the degree in which your family will succeed in obtaining the vision.
Our ministry went through a very similar vision development process. View our vision statement for an example of what one could look like.
What are some ideas that you have for developing a vision statement in your home?