Outside of being a pastor’s wife, I’m not sure there’s a more difficult job than being a preacher’s kid. Hands down – it’s a tough occupation. While a spouse (sometimes) has a choice in whether to marry a minister or not, children don’t usually have that luxury. They don’t choose their parents. In fact most are born though some are dragged into the fishbowl. I have three great kids and none of them had a choice – they’re preacher’s kids.
You do know the expectation drill for a preacher’s kids? Every PK is required to be perfect, always on time, appropriately dress, dripping with kindness, always possessing a smile with kindness in their heart, always helpful, neat, perfect student, fine athlete, FCA leader, first place in Bible Drill, quote the Bible from memory, like hymns (really?), play an instrument, perfect attendance award winner, and the list goes on and on.
We need to cut preacher’s kids some slack! They are human, normal, and everyday people that happen to have a parent that serves as a pastor. That doesn’t make them any more holy. Neither should it require them to live under a more stringent code of expectations than the next student or church member. Jo and I are blessed! We have three great kids and I am proud of each! We have been blessed with supportive and encouraging congregations that have blessed our family. That is not always the case for the minister’s family.
If you’re a pastor, pray for your kids daily (maybe hourly). If you’re a church member, pray for and support your pastor’s children. Don’t place arduous and unrealistic expectations on him or her just because they’re a pastor’s kid. Help them live healthy well-adjusted lives even when they reside in a fishbowl. Love and include them as any other child. Remember, it’s not easy being a pastor’s kid and they didn’t necessarily ask for the role.
In praying daily for my kids, here’s my request. I ask God to grow (nurture) my children into becoming solid and serving churchmen in the days ahead. I pray for God to grant them a similar love for the church their dad shares. I love the church and in all her imperfections she is still the bride. I pray for God to give them a passion for the Commission that cannot be eclipsed by the organization (church). I pray God’s protection, His anointing, and His purpose for my kids. I want them to be disciples of their Lord and not puppets of man’s expectations. I want them to love Jesus and His bride their entire life.