Overwhelmed with information? Overwhelmed with learning new things? Overwhelmed with taking care of your own family while reaching out to your church families? Overwhelmed teachers, students, parents, grandparents, WalMart grocery lists? We are only one week in on an unprecedented deep dive into the creativity pool to maintain connection with our church families as we also work to keep our own families safe, secure, taught, busy, occupied, calm, fearless, awake, and off the television or electronics 24/7. How are you doing? Oh, and it’s raining!
Every day last week from dawn until late in the evening, I felt my phone was connected to me like an IV drip. Gathering information takes time. Learning new platforms takes time. Reaching out by phone to every single amazing volunteer and a ton of students takes time. Purging closets for what can be bagged and tagged to share in a Family Faith Kit drive-thru for every Tuesday for 8 weeks takes time. There is a difference between digital marketing and social media. There is a difference between online announcements and online engagement. Social media and online engagement take time.
Others will make suggestions of what you should do. Others will compare you to the church down the street with a technical staff, IT ninjas, and a collaborative team. You will feel there aren’t enough hours in the day. You will wish you could do everything and anything. We’re all living with new routines, new structures (or no structures), new schedules (or no schedules). Ministry with children and families is so much more than Sunday morning services….it’s daily….it’s nightly…it’s during the remarkable moments and milestones of life. Birthdays, weddings, and sudden-though-celebratory home-comings-to-Jesus keep happening.
What was I reminded of in last week’s many webinars and phone calls?
- Remember your WHY.
- Ministry is still about relationships.
- Children’s ministry is still about partnering with parents and servant-leaders so THEY are the spiritual rock stars in their kid’s eyes and hearts.
- How are you asking, “How are you doing?” “How can I pray for you?”
Make a schedule of what is realistic for you with some easy wins. Try something new, but not everything. Keep it simple. Keep it real for you and your families. I will make it a point of not adding to the noise for my families. My heart’s desire has always been for my parents to take the primary role of spiritually leading their kids. My role is to resource them, giving them easy wins. You don’t want to be on the other side of this and need a vacation. This could be short. This could be a while. Be fair to yourself. Keep healthy boundaries and don’t get sucked into your own unrealistic expectations for yourself. YOU and YOUR FAMILY are your first ministry.
“Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.” James 1:12