As a single mom to three girls, Sunday mornings at my house can quickly turn into a marathon of chaos. See, all three of my girls are in a different environment this year—middle school, elementary school, and preschool. Since our home church isn’t meeting face-to-face yet, that means I have three preps, three lessons, and three clean-ups.
One Sunday, I thought I’d get clever. I sat each kid in a chair, cooked us breakfast, and told them we were going to do church as a family. I told them the story of Jonah and the whale. You know—a good ol’ lesson in obedience. I even got fancy and grabbed my toddler’s stuffed Shamu for a visual. When I got to the part where the whale spat Jonah back onto dry land, the room erupted.
My independent middle schooler: “Mom, that did not really happen.”
My sensitive elementary schooler: “So if I disobey, will an animal eat me too?”
My needy preschooler: “I want my toy back! I WANT MY TOY!”
I was on staff with Atlanta’s North Point Community Church for many years, and I should know what I’m doing. But when it comes to teaching my own kids about God and faith? I need all the help I can get.
Now, more than ever, parents are connected to their kid’s faith development. We’re no longer dropping off and picking up our kids with little regard to what they’d learned the hour we were in church. For many of us, we ARE the church now. We’re the pastors, small group leaders, choir directors, and facilities/janitorial staff. We are invested in our kids’ growing faith on a deeper level than we’ve ever been before.
Although the circumstances aren’t ideal (Thanks for nothing, Covid-19!), I think this pandemic season is an opportunity. I mean, as church leaders, this is what we’ve always wanted—for moms, dads, stepparents, and guardians to place a personal stake in their kids’ faith-development.
So now it’s time for us to step up. To rally around our families, championing parents in new, innovative ways.
Since most things are digital these days, it’s easier than ever to set up families for Sunday wins. Here are a few ways to help out:
- Mail (snail mail). Okay. So this isn’t digital. But sending resources through snail-mail can give parents a tangible tool to use with their kids each week. Plus, who doesn’t like getting actual mail?
I’ve even seen some churches send birthday banners or encouraging cards to specific kids and parents each week. What a wonderful reminder that you are cheering for and thinking of your families, even though you don’t see them week-to-week.
- Email. The key to getting people to open your emails is making your emails worth opening. Make sure your communications provide value to the recipient. If it’s only serving your ministry’s needs, it’s likely your next message will go straight to the trash folder.
- The Parent Cue App. We created the Parent Cue App LONG before the pandemic. But it’s never been a more useful tool for you and for families. You—the church leader—can even customize the app so your families see church-specific curriculum and environment-specific curriculum, announcements, and details.
Want to know more? You can start your month-long free trial by clicking here.
Will the Church ever be the same? Man, I hope not.
Don’t get me wrong. I miss the community of meeting in-person, and I will be throwing my kids through the doors once they’re open again. But taking part in these conversations and lessons with my girls over the last few months has shown me that what we’re doing as church leaders is invaluable. It’s irreplaceable. And as a parent, I’ve never been more thankful for my church.