Most children assume that their family of origin experience is normal. In this environment we learn to understand affection, communication, conflict resolution, daily routines, and expectations and so on.
As children gain their independence and start to evaluate how they will live, they will build or rebuild based on the foundation they’ve been given. They will act and react on the values that their family established.
Further along, many have wrestled with the realization that their family was not always right. What do you do in relationship to parents or siblings you no longer see eye-to-eye with? Some will spend decades trying to be ‘other’ than what their family was. Some parents will suffer great regrets for ways they feel they have failed their children.
All in all, the family model applies tremendous gravity to your life—you will be pulled in directions set out for you from an early age. You may endeavor to change direction, but always with an awareness of how you were shaped.
There are books, organizations and seminars devoted to ‘The Christian family’. There is endless advice on marriage and parenting available for Christians today. But does our idealism about the family find reality in the Scriptures? There are just as many bad examples as good in the Bible. Perhaps a better focus should be on how to be a follower of Jesus in the context of your family. How do the teachings of Scripture cause you to think and act out in these personal relationships?