Sometimes our families resemble a movie. There is a little romance. A little drama. A little humor. And a little (or a lot) of conflict.
Of course every movie needs conflict. That’s what keeps us interested. We enjoy seeing the characters of the movie get into and out of trouble.
Of course, in reality not every situation had a happy ending in 30 minutes or less. Real life is different, but it’s also better.
Every day, words are coming out of our mouths. They can either build people up. Or they can
tear them down. In the United States we having a saying: “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but names will never hurt me.” This is a false saying.
Every word that comes out of our mouths will either hurt or help. It will either bring family members closer or push them apart. This is something we need to consider when we are speaking—to our children, to our spouse, to other family members.
But this is not the only dialogue happening in our families. Whether we know it or not, there is another continual dialogue going through our minds. It’s our internal dialogue. The dialogue occurs in two ways: “Thorough and organized” dialogue or dialogue that “bounces around like a little rubber ball in your mind.”
Let’s consider the “through and organized” thinking. I like to think of this as similar to a movie script.
A script is something the writer uses to put the movie on paper. It provides direction for the producer, the actors and even the set directions.
The script isn’t the movie. The script is direction for the action. The script guides everything. Without the script, there is no order and the action has no meaning.
Can you imagine a movie without a script? It would jump around. Nothing would make sense. And sometimes, because we don’t organize our thoughts in our mind (like a script), our actions are the same. Our actions, our lives, seem to be without meaning and order.
Can you, as a member of your family, say you have a plan and purpose for your life? Or as a member of a family, do you find your thoughts just running around in your mind, with no plan or purpose? I’m not talking about organizing daily activities. We all somehow manage to organize our days. I’m taking about bigger thinking, such as:
Where do I want to be in the future?
Where would I like to see my family in the future?
What would I like my marriage to look at five years from now?
What kind of adults do I want my children to be?
Yet too often, instead of thinking and planning, we let our minds get carried away with concerns. We think about things that happened 10 years ago. Or maybe we consider worries we have about tomorrow.
We also find our thoughts are full of emotions. Happy thoughts, sad thoughts, excited thoughts or scared thoughts. Our thoughts are focused on whatever is going on that moment. One day things are well. The next day things are not so well. Our actions then follow our emotions, which we know can lead to all types of trouble.
Instead of just allowing our thoughts and what is happening around us be in control, as a family member we need to start organizing our thoughts. This, in turn, will lead to good plans for our lives.
Developing a Script
Developing a script for our thoughts is coming up with a solid plan. We make plans in our minds of where we’d like to go, and then work to make sure our actions follow.
A script for your life is something you create after thinking through situations. You consider possible paths and choose one that will lead you in the direction you want to go.
Of course, while it is good to think and to plan, it is not our job to do it alone. Just as one character in a movie without a script affects every other part of the movie, if we do not have a script (a plan) for our lives, it will affect every part of our family.
Yet if we do have a good script and a good plan it can benefit our family. What we do will always affect the people around us.
Tricia Goyerhas written more than 35 books, including both novels that delight and entertain readers and nonfiction titles that offer encouragement and hope. She has also published more than 500 articles in national publications such as Guideposts, Thriving Family, Proverbs 31, and HomeLife Magazine.