It only took me 13 years of serving kids, teens, and their parents for me to figure out that I actually needed to slow down and create parent strategy if the ministry I led was actually going to be capable of partnering with parents. I served parents of teens and kids with good intentions. I hoped that what I was doing was helpful to parents. I hoped that parents understood our desire to work together. I hoped that the events we created for kids and teens did not conflict with the family. I hoped that parents understood I wanted to be there for them and not just their kids.
Everything I did for years when it came to parents really revolved around good intentions because at the end of the week my actual energy and time were limited. Over and over the effort I hoped to make investing in parents got short changed because of the week to week ministry load with teens and kids. My good intentions fell short because as Andy Stanley says, it’s direction and not intention that determine the destination.
After years of good intentions I found a partner to help me actually put a strategy in place that we still use today at Grace Community Church. You can see our parent page here on our church website. That partner that helped us was the team at ParentMinistry.net. Here are the five reasons I discovered why I needed to slow down and develop a real intentional parent strategy…
- Good intentions never actually help a parent be a better parent // for a parents to actually partner with your ministry they need to know you actually have resources that will help them be a better mom and dad.
- A planned parent strategy pushes you do do a few things really well // you can’t do everything but you can do a few things really well for the parents you serve. When you do a few things really well you build trust over time.
- An intentional strategy builds a consistent bridge of communication // the parents might not plug into your strategy right now but when you build a consistent system of communication you will build a bridge from the church to the home. When they need help they will know to turn to you!
- An intentional strategy allows you to build levels of partnership // not every parent will partner in the same way but when you slow down and develop a strategy you can build different levels that allow parents to partner in ways that work for their family.
- Parents really do need coaching // parenting is really difficult and parents are looking for coaching. When you build out a strategy you can provide needed coaching to parents from the church to the home! Parents are looking for help…why can’t that be from your ministry.
These are 5 reasons we slowed down and really moved from good intentions to a concrete strategy. Summer is here and now is the time to get ready to engage parents on a different level this fall as school starts back. Take some time and think about what your strategy for parents is…do you have one? One simple step to help you process a strategy is to check out the team at ParentMinistry.Net and get some ideas!