1- Make the world’s most exciting story difficult:
If your kids think you’re boring, so do others, but they just aren’t telling you. Your kids will tell you, ask them. You are their quick track to knowing the Bible. You make it boring and methodical, and they will take that with them into the rest of their lives. I’ve had the privilege of teaching the Bible in a variety of settings, but I grew and had some wonderful moments teaching kids. If you are a hopeful church planter or still in seminary, my advice to you is ask if you can volunteer with kids. Lead and influence your children into church involvement, don’t just demand it.
2- Be unimaginably stressed out by doing “God’s work”:
My son told me on the way to school recently that he’s planning on being a police officer, and that is going to be much harder than what I do. After asking him what he thinks I do, he says, “You talk and pray, how hard is that”. I suppose I agree. I do “Talk” and “Pray”. He could have simply said “talk”, but here’s the insider info. He said “pray” because I pray for them before they leave for school. I pray for them before they go to sleep. I pray for them throughout the day, and that’s just them. I pray before anyone in the house even wakes up. Often I’m praying to recognize that my teenage daughter is sitting on the coach in front of me, and I didn’t even here her come in the living room. He recognized that I do a lot of praying.
The less you pray, the more you’ll work. Sounds weird, but it’s true.
3- Make everyone more important than them:
Think about how God designed life to show relational importance. Your family is the closest to ground zero and gets the most damage when your life explodes. If you drop everything for everyone, except your family, you send a loud and clear message that your family is low priority. Ultimately, you’re no different than the career oriented family sacrificer in any other profession. Ministry is not a profession, it’s a calling you’ve been designed for. If it’s primarily a profession to you, you will eventually act like it. Ministry is the overflow of a life abiding in Christ. You don’t move to a city to plant a church. You move to a city to live life and let that overflow into a church plant.
If ministry is like constant grinding gears for you, you’re missing something. That doesn’t mean you should walk away, but it might. Realize God is in control, He loves you, and He didn’t give you this life to be miserable or to make others miserable.
My son was right, I just talk and pray, but I do pray. The quickest way to relieve the pressure of ministry is to be the boldest and most often prayer in the room