Balancing family and ministry is a constant struggle for parents in ministry. Chelsea and I both have leadership roles at Grace Community Church and the demand for us to balance home and church has become even more important. There are times both of us have responsibilities that take us away from home and from our kids and we signed up for the challenge. God has called us to serve His church and serve our kids and He is passionate about both. If God is for both then as parents we can be passionate about both and be effective at both. The other day my youngest told me that she loves church. My oldest is already volunteering at the age of 8. Both our kids believe in, enjoy, and are thriving in their growth as followers of Jesus because of the partnership our family has with our church. As a pastor (especially a student pastor) here are some things we are doing to make sure we have balance with church and home.
- We involve our kids in the ministry we lead >> our kids understand and are involved in much of the ministry we lead…what a great advantage. They know the volunteers we lead with. They care our events go well. They even give us feedback (on ministry ideas for kids). when our last group of seniors graduated my 8 year old cried. Why? Because she loved those teens. That is a kid who is involved and connected!
- We make sure our kids are plugged in to their weekly small groups >> This is a big deal. Our kids are a part of our church. We make sure they are growing just like we are trying to hep other teens and kids grow.
- We make sure our kids are serving with us >> Our girls know there are things we do for “work” and things we do just to serve. We involve our kids in our effort to serve our community.
- We protect our days off and take vacation >> Yep, we take days off and we use our vacation time. Days off and vacation just help our family find health. We find we need it in order to function!
- We protect 4 nights of the week to be home >> being home and being in a routine is a big deal. We have community group night, a night of the week our kids are involved in outside activities, and a night where we are doing student ministry…the other 4 are nights we try to be home. Kids need to know they matter as much or more than anything going on at church. They see where we spend our time.
- We leave work at work >> Home is home and work is work. When we leave the office we are trying to leave our problems at the office. This is hard with technology but it has to be an effort we make every week.