The general flow of the seminar “How to be a HERO to parents in (student) ministry”. Steve Wright gave quite a bit of background and personal information, which ends up being par for course in the “pre-conference” labs we go to from the D6 Conference. Nevertheless, there are some pretty good highlights in his time.
He talked about 7 Moorings of Student Ministries, which sounded like “foundations”, even though he never quite told us why he chose the word Moorings….or instruct us on how to spell it. The 7 are:
1. Support and lean on the Authority of Scripture
2. Stand on biblical conviction
3. Role of being a pastor – 1 Timothy 3
4. Priority of the 2 Institutions
I realize that’s only 4, but that’s all he gave us before moving on because time was limited. It’s also quite possible that 5-7 were somehow in between those, and I was simply not a good enough note taker. At any rate, I really appreciated 2 and 3 specifically.
2. The biblical conviction, specifically, that PARENTS ARE THE PRIMARY SOURCE OF DISCIPLESHIP FOR THEIR CHILDREN. How much does my ministry reflect that? If that was the litmus test, I would probably lose my job pretty quick right now. I suppose that’s why we’re all here together, a collective “kick in the pants” for the areas we are missing out on what God desires for the home.
3. Role of being a pastor. Especially as a parent of very young children, who often feels guilty about how that impacts my ministry. I think it’s safe to tell you I’ve actually had a parent, with good intentions I’m sure, say “I’ll bet you look forward to when your kids are a bit older, when you can actually do your job, eh?” with a smiling face…thinking I’d laugh with them. I was stunned. But nevertheless…yes…my very young children require a different type of care than their teens. But in 1 Timothy 3, we hear words of encouragement. When God wants to give instruction on what type of leader He desires for His Church….He calls on those who have high priority on caring for their family at home. For if they can’t care for the affairs of their own family, why call on them to lead in the Church?
A few practical ideas he gave also:
– Families need WORSHIP times at home, which can come in many types and names.
– Host events that REQUIRE parents come, for teens to attend.
– Encourage/foster written communication from parents TO teens.
– Resource PARENTS to be the “ministry” hero. (activities, family retreats, parties, etc.)
– Helping families to become MISSIONAL together. Not just doing a mission trip, but finding something that brings “mission” to the work a family is doing for the Kingdom TOGETHER. Prayer, raising money, working with hands, relating, whatever. Some echoes here of Donald Miller’s most recent book about a million miles or somethin’ like that…..crafting a story for our families worth living as part of.