How To Parent a PK
Last week, I wrote a blog about How to Pastor a PK.
Today, I am writing about how to parent YOUR child who is a PK (pastor’s kid).
I will start out by saying, I am no expert on this, I have only been a parent for 3 short years. I have not even begun to enter the exciting pre-teen or teen years (just trying to get through the diapers and the 3’s).
But I was a PK. So, I will be speaking from my experience as a PK and as a parent of a PK.
In my opinion, it is hard to parent and pastor your own children.
I needed people in my life who spoke into my life. Who pastored me, who saw more in me than I did. These people were teachers, puppet team leaders, and youth pastors.
I don’t know how many times I have asked my daughter, Andi, to do something and she just flat out ignores me.
Then my mother, or Mema, as she is known to my daughter, comes up and asks her the same exact thing, in the same exact way, and my daughter happily obey.
So frustrating! But I realize that Andi needs someone other than me to tell ask her to do things, who she will listen to.
Let’s face it. I am her mother; I am not cool. But Mema and Papa are her favorites, she will do almost anything they say.
Step One: Pray People Into Your Kids’ Life.
My mom talks about when I was young she began to pray for other people to come into my life to help me along the way.
Since we did not live near my grandparents, she prayed for others to fill that role in my life. Godly people that could speak into my life and have influence.
Your children need others helping them and pulling for them. They need other godly people to speak into their lives. To cheer them on. To challenge them.
If you have small children and need childcare for your children, begin to pray that God would show you someone that can help you along in this way.
Remember that you are not in this alone. It takes a village, right?
Think about Jesse, David’s father.
Samuel comes and tells Jesse that one of his sons is going to be anointed, King. Jesse doesn’t even bother to go get David, he thought he was too young. But God had other plans. Samuel was there to anoint David – as king. Samuel saw, what God saw in David.
Pray for Samuel’s to come into your child’s life and see things in your kids that you cannot.
Step Two: Give your kids a break!
Give them grace! Please remember that they are just children. If you are in leadership at your church, I know there are a lot of people watching you and your family. Many times watching and judging if you are not perfect.
Hey, shocker! You are not perfect, and neither are your children!
Hey, shocker! I am not perfect either!
Honestly, I think people receive better from someone who they know is not perfect. Read my experience when I started opening up and showing my imperfections with people here.
It’s called being real. Many of your leaders, that you are leading are dealing with the same issues and challenges you are.
I realize you have your job to do and ministry to maintain and grow. But realize that your kids are kids and may make mistakes. They may embarrass you at times. They may also surprise you and shine. One thing you can do is begin teaching them “ministry boundaries.”
What are “ministry boundaries?” It is what you make it. You begin by making guidelines for when you are at church. What are things you talk about and do at home with your child? What do you do at church and what do you expect at church?
You are your child’s parent, but at church, you are pastor or teacher to all of the kids. Your child needs to know that you love them, but at church, you love all of the kids.
Step Three: Ask Your Children If You Can Use Their Story As An Object Lesson In Your Sermon.
My dad was a children’s pastor, so he only spoke in the main service every couple of months on Wednesday nights. I remember one night my dad was preaching and after service, someone came up to me in youth group and said something like, “Your dad told a story about you tonight.”
My heart sank, I was nervous, what did he say?
The person was just trying to make a joke, and my dad didn’t talk about me at all that night. But I was thankful that whenever he does use my life as an illustration in his sermon he asks me first.
Being a kid and or a teenager is hard enough, let alone having everyone around you know all of your problems.
One of the most important relationships that you have is with your children. Make sure you don’t alienate them by telling stories, that fit your lesson, without first talking with them.
Step Four: Let Your Kids Stay Home Every Once In A While.
My dad was a pastor at a large church that had services on Saturday night, Sunday morning, and Wednesday Night. I also went to the Christian School that was in the same building.
I remember a time in my life when I was at the church building every single day! It got very overwhelming.
Thankfully, my parents figured that out and allowed me to start choosing when I “went to church.”
The rules that they set in place were that I had to volunteer in one area of ministry and I also had to go to one service a week.
I could choose if I went to youth group or main service. For a while, I only went to the main service, until our senior pastor did a series on marriage, and I got bored. So I started going to youth group.
My point is, give your kids a break, find a plan that works for you, your family, and the season in life.
God gave you your kids, He knows that you can handle it!
So, go out there and parent the heck out of your babies!