Shaping Culture Revisited

Between November 23, 2007 and February 2, 2008 (a few days before we flew to Korea to get Ethan), I wrote a series of 6 posts reflecting on and dreaming about the kind of culture we wanted to shape in our home, once we welcomed Ethan into our lives.

Nearly a year into our parenting journey, here are some early reflections on several important areas …

God-Centered Culture
We’re shaping a God-centered culture by reading Scripture and praying together, mostly during a devotional time each night before bed. A few months ago, Ethan learned, without any prompting from us, to clasp his hands together and bow his head for prayer (which was usually followed by a sigh if he was waiting to eat!). I’m sure that as Ethan grows and we’re able to have conversations, we’ll find ways to “do theology” together.

Learning Culture
It’s been fun to watch Ethan develop and learn new things. He’s extremely observant; nothing seems to get by him. In December, we wrote about Signing. Yesterday, I asked Ethan if he was ready for his bath. Immediately, Ethan put down his sippy cup of water, and did the bath sign. That surprised us, because that’s the newest sign we’ve taught him and it’s probably been a couple weeks since we’ve even tried using it! Anyway, Ethan seems to be a good learner; that’s a skill/passion we want to encourage. We’ve never been in a hurry (or pushy) about teaching Ethan new things; we simply want to provide an atmosphere where Ethan can learn and grow, naturally.

High AQ culture
A couple things here: 1) We try not to overreact to adversity/problems ourselves (which isn’t always easy), and 2) We try to help Ethan not over-react to the adversity he experiences. Funny thing is, in the High AQ post, I wrote, “We want to raise a climber.” I didn’t really mean that literally, but Ethan is definitely a climber!

Leadership Culture
I’m not sure this is an area that really gets developed/exercised during a child’s first couple years of life. Although, I will say, that Ethan has definitely had a lot of experience leading us this year! 😆

Servant Culture
This is another area that will be largely developed later, I think. For now, it mainly needs to be something that we model for him and involve him when we can.

Trustee culture
Similarly, this is an area where we need to model good practices for now, which will hopefully make it easier to teach him good practices later.

Well, we knew culture shaping would be a real challenge, and it certainly is. We’re only a year into it, and I’m sure it gets more and more challenging along the way. But hopefully, putting down the best foundation possible (though it’ll never be perfect because we’re not perfect!), will help us down the road.

What kind of culture are you trying to shape in your home? What are you learning along the way?

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