Values-Driven Family



Maintaining a Positive Home Atmosphere
by Marc and Cynthia Carrier

Adapted from The Values-Driven Family: A Proactive Plan for Successful Biblical Parenting

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Ever have one of those days? Maybe you're "off," and the kids are "off," too. Or, you're doing pretty good, but it's not your best effort. Maybe everything you try to do causes problems of one sort or another.

A good strategy to keep in your back pocket for "those days" is something called re-boot. It's an effective, mood-altering method that quickly restores a positive home atmosphere when things suddenly go awry.

When everyone is worn thin and everybody is in a bad mood (frustrated, tired, or just plain irritable), things do not just change by themselves. In fact, you can expect the tone in the home to go from bad to worse, if left unchecked. Compare it to a computer that is acting up. It can be painfully slow or some features can simply stop working. So how might you respond (if you are as patient as I am with computers)? Click faster and harder and get frustrated that things just seem to slow down more—or, ultimately, the computer just seizes. How do you get things back to normal again? Reboot: Control—Alt—Delete! This concept can also apply to the family during progressively deteriorating days.

First, control the situation. Recognize that the environment is not healthy and that the team can’t continue down this path. In our home, we stop everything and call a REBOOT. Everyone gathers in a room and sits down. I (or Cindy, if I am not there) tell the family that the mood is dismal and must change.

Next, alter the path. Ask the family if they want to have a blessed day. Ask them if they feel blessed now. Then tell them that we need to start over and live by God's Word and His values, so that we can experience the joy, peace, and success He has in store for us.

Finally, delete the past. All misdeeds are forgiven. Every person (moody adults included) must give every other member of the family hugs and kisses and tell them they are sorry for being crabby or for doing whatever it was they had done to contribute to the mood crisis.

This method is exceptional! It really works. We have done this and have turned the tone 180 degrees in our home. Rebooting is a staple part of maintaining peace and joy in our home. It helps parents and children alike to recognize that peace, joy, and success are a choice. We as a family unit can set a joyful and loving tone in the home. Implementing this method encourages everyone in the family to come on board as a team and choose to take advantage of the new start offered.

This is a great reflection of the grace that God extends to us through Christ, offering a fresh start when we’ve chosen the wrong path and come to him in repentance. We urge you to try this method in order to reduce the expression of negative emotions that threaten to wreak havoc in your home. The Bible says, “Better a dry crust with peace and quiet than a house full of feasting with strife” (Proverbs 17:1)—this is so true! Little else matters in a home with a negative tone.

Copyright © 2007-2011, Marc and Cynthia Carrier



Related Values-Driven resources:

Values-Driven Family

The Values-Driven Family

A comprehensive, easy-to-read-and-apply parenting guide.


Home Sweet Home

Home Sweet Home: Creating a Joyful Home Atmosphere



Marc and Cynthia Carrier are the homeschooling parents of eight children and the owners of Values-Driven ( The focus of Marc and Cindy's "Values-Driven" ministry is to encourage and equip Christian families to make the most of every opportunity; that is, to serve God, participate in fulfilling the Great Commission, and raise children who love and serve the Lord. For more information about their resources, for fresh inspiration on your family journey, or to find practical helps--including many FREE DOWNLOADS--visit





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