Justice in the family

Healthy families show hospitality and compassion towards their members. This is what we have said in the past two weeks, looking at the four key qualities of healthy Christian families.

By KILTON MOYO

I want us to look at justice, as one of the qualities of healthy families.

Needless to bother you with dictionary definitions of justice.

I know that you know and you talk so much about justice issues.

When we are talking justice in the family, we are basically looking at treating each other with fairness, being fair-minded and we are also talking of equity.

I am always saddened to see that most people, who stand up to talk justice at national level are culprits in meting injustice to their families or loved ones.

I am trying to do a little survey on most activists and on my general findings, I discover an imbalance in most people.

They demand what they cannot give. This is hypocrisy. Justice begins at home. God is a just God.

He operates on justice and justice is His nature. The family was created by a just God, so it can give justice and demonstrate the justice nature of God.

Families ought to mirror the justice of God in their dealings with each other. This is more so for all those Christian families out there.


How is it like in a family that practices justice?

People know what the rules are.

Justice is about openness. Family rules are made clear and every member knows what is expected of them.

Many families operate on fate. There are no rules and guidelines for grooming and interaction and all that.

Where there are no rules there is confusion and pandemonium.

In fact, there is lawlessness. You cannot run a family without rules. This is one reason why many families have produced murderers this much. Justice can be served where there are rules. Justice brings order.

Rules apply to everyone

In a family where there is justice, rules apply to everyone. There are no favourites. Family members are treated equally.

Most families struggle with this selfish way of leadership, where rules are applied differently. In those families that do not have rules, unfairness is bound to take over.

Family is about equality. Yes, people are different but people are equal before the law. I am convinced in my heart that a lot of this selfishness in our communities has been learnt at home, where rules can be thrown into the bin just to favour someone. Justice is about fairness. Family is about fairness.

Fairness, honesty, kindness and respect characterise the dealings of family members with one another.

This is what a just family looks like. People deal with each other fairly and show a lot of honesty. Nothing is under the carpet.

Kindness is given unconditionally. Justice is about esteeming others before self. Justice promotes unity and builds also teamwork in the family.

Families that practice justice respect each other. I know that generally speaking, from our African culture, it is hard for elders to respect the young but they expect the young to respect them.

Where are these young people getting respect from, if they have not received it from their elders?

Conflict is dealt with openly and constructively. People find ways to be angry without being mean.

Justice is one huge means of solving conflicts. In a family that gives justice, conflict cannot be left unresolved. People are open about their feelings and pains.

People engage each other on issues and seek to resolve constructively.

People ask questions and air their views. This makes every member belong and contribute to the wellbeing of the family.

No member is too poor to add value to the family. Even when members get angry with each other, it is resolved because they remain loving.

Do not remove love when you are angry. I have seen families collapse at the altar of anger.

Have you not seen people, who have separated or even killed because they had a family conflict that they were too scared to resolve? Justice will alleviate such.

What am I saying here really? There are no double standards in a just family. You cannot demand respect but you do not give it.
There is no secrecy in a just family. Just families tell the truth no matter what. There is no covering up. Justice requires truthfulness.

My prayer for your family today is that you will seek justice.

If God is building your family, then justice must flow. If we practice justice in the family, it will be easy to practise it wherever we are.

It is hard beloved to practice what was not put in our subconscious when we were young. May our families be places of justice.
For now, consider hospitality, compassion and justice in your family.

Kilton Moyo is creator of Fruitful Marriages, a renewal and enrichment programme and is pastor, counsellor and author of Marriage Fitness. Call or whatsap on +263 775 337 207, +263 772 610 103 citizenafricafoundation@gmail.com.

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