We are grateful to The Word Among Us Press for their release of our latest effort, Reclaiming Family Time: A Guide to Slowing Down and Savoring the Gift of One Another.
Now, full disclosure: we were very hesitant about taking this project on, and even now have to remind people who ask about it that we don’t have it all figured out. From the beginning, we decided to discern our way into this topic–to talk, pray, and research the way that contemporary American society tends to compromise family time. Sports schedules, to use one example, are entirely out of hand, driven by an industry that does not always have children’s best interests at heart.
But we said yes, because we understood that it was very important for our family to bring a more discerning approach to our time together as a family.
The great irony is that soon thereafter, our lives were thrown into overdrive, with work-related stresses that took a toll on our family time. In the midst of this stress, though, we found ourselves returning to some of the basic principles that made their way into the book: a commitment to shared leisure time, relying on the wisdom of the German philosopher Josef Pieper; a commitment to practicing Sabbath, with insights from Biblical scholar Bonnie Thurston; Saint Paul’s exhortations to observe an “acceptable time” (kairos) for doing the works of God; and others.
What emerged is something we are proud of: a meditation on the gift of time. We continue to aspire to get it right–to persuade ourselves and our children of how good it is to sanctify our days and nights, not too unlike the way that monks sanctify time through the daily office.
Let us know what you think!