How do you really bring Spiritual conversations into the home? Is there a way to do it without piling more things and ideas into the already overwhelmed home? Parents are extremely overwhelmed with busy schedules, getting dinner on the table, homework done & back to it the next day. How do you really help them to fit God into their lives all week long? I understand that parents need to make it priority but until they are fully invested they will not. So we start small & let them know we are with them every step of the way.
We decided to take on a challenge that would change our church families forever. How can you really get parents and kids talking at home without putting so much pressure on them? We first had to understand that each family will be different. Some may really use the info you give them, some will trash it or find it months later under a pile of papers. There are a few things us as volunteers & leaders must remember
- Don’t take it personally. You can really help families if you just stick with it.
- Don’t give up on an idea because it did not work the first time or it was not perfect
- Don’t forget your why
- Pray Pray pray
We decided almost one year ago that we needed to get the kids and the parents to start having conversations at home. When they go home for dinner they will talk about church & what happened. The two famous questions, “did you have fun” and “what did you do?” We needed to build on that. We had to bring spiritual conversations into the home and challenge families to talk more openly about the Bible.
- We found a curriculum that would work for the children’s ministry and our Sr pastor. Our pastor teaches the same lesson each week as we do in the children’s ministry and he reminds parents of this each week. He talks about the Children’s ministry and the differences that are made. Through family ministry we will help bring The Big God Story into homes during the week by taking this journey together and build spiritual bridges from where people are to where Christ wants them to be!
- We provide Home front weekly each week for the parents to start the lesson before Sunday. We believe that the parents should build the spiritual bridge with their children. It has to start at home. This is very simple & only takes 15 minutes. I teach parents to find time in small steps.
- In the car on the way to school
- During commercial breaks while watching their favorite T.V show
- Around the fire pit outside
- Dinner time( Make it a game)
- Have a family conference call-busy families love this( give the kids a reason to use the phone)
- Have a face book study
- Make a story book & let them design it
- While waiting for the bus
- Take 5 minutes each day
- We provide Home front monthly. This has a monthly overview along with tips on marriage, kids, parenting, dinner time tips, and so much more.
- Recently we decided to go one step further not only will our Sr. pastor teach the same curriculum as we do in the Children’s ministry but we will now be embracing music. Our children will sing the same songs in kid’s church as they do in big church. Music inspires no matter how you look at it. We could not ask for anything more if our families are singing and praising together. We are able to provide CDs and links for each family to sing at home.
- Family in balance table- We have a table dedicated to our families on Sunday morning. At this table we have free resources, book, bibles and more. This table has helped us build relationships and give the parents a great place to ask questions. Sometimes they just need a shoulder and we give it to them.
- Families serving together. We have over half of our team serving as a family. Not only are they learning together but they are teaching together. This gives them a reason to talk and plan at home. If our families take advantage of the home front weekly they are a step ahead on Sundays. Because it all ties in there is no extra work involved.
- Building relationships- this is the most important aspect. Building relationships with your families is key. Go the extra mile as much as you can.
- Communication – Find ways to communicate with your families and have multiple lines of communication. Let them know that you are available & no question is too big or small.
Get out a mingle, high five the kids when they arrive, say hi & smile at the parents. Be purpose driven. Don’t leave your information sitting on the table waiting to get into the hands of parents. Grab a few & hand them out. Always remember to not judge any family. We are all busy and everyone deals with it different.
Maybe it’s not about what works and what does not, maybe it’s just consistency, trial and error. Having passion for something so big that will change every life around you. Be respectful, sympathetic and patient. No matter how hard we try we won’t get it all right all the time. What works for our church may not work for yours. Follow your heart and pray about the changes that will impact your families. Families are the future and will make a difference because of what you are doing. God will work through you to help build stronger families.