Thursday, March 22, 2012

Love Begins at Home

Love begins at home…
– Mother Teresa

There is a lot of talk about Family Ministry as it applies to Children’s Ministry. What does it mean? What does it look like? While I believe that this is an important conversation to have, I believe that we also need to be talking about what Family Ministry looks like in our own homes.

We can get so caught up in doing Children’s Ministry that we neglect our first ministry which is our family. We have become more intentional about reaching outside of our homes and churches and less in reaching those inside our own homes. We are teaching the families in our churches how to spend time together and teaching parents to be the spiritual leaders of their home – yet we leave very little time to do that ourselves.

This is an issue that we have addressed in our own family. My husband and I sat down and had a discussion about how to make time with our family a priority over my service in Children’s Ministry. Here are just a few of the things that we are doing:

Family Prayer

This is more than praying at meal times. In our family, we begin our days in prayer together and also pray at various times throughout the day. We believe that this is giving our children an opportunity to learn about prayer from us by seeing it in action. This also gives them an opportunity to voice their prayer requests which helps in refocusing from themselves to others around them. I keep track of our prayers in a journal and have been sharing with them when and how God answers those prayers.

Family Dinners

This is a fantastic time for conversations to happen. It is a time for us to share about our day and talk about other issues as well. This can be a challenge at times due to competing schedules, but we have intentionally decided that this needs to happen several days a week to keep connected. This doesn’t have to happen over a 5 course meal. It isn’t about the food, but about the time spent together.

Family Devotions

This is a wonderful time to get together and get into God’s Word several times a week. This isn’t something that we do every night, and it certainly isn’t something formal. We will read scripture together and then talk about it. What does it mean? How do we apply it to our lives? This is also a time for us to challenge the boys in their own quiet times.

Family Dates

This is a time that we schedule for fun together. This doesn’t necessarily mean that we go somewhere and spend money. We sometimes do family game nights and movie nights in our home. This also includes date day/night with my husband and dates with our boys individually. Dating my husband is something I do on a regular basis which gives us a chance to connect outside of parenting as a couple. Dating the boys is something that we both do and the boys love this time just for them.

Making our family a priority is an important part of being able to do Children’s Ministry. It is practicing what we preach.

Love begins at home.
That’s Family Ministry.


  1. This is an excellent, EXCELLENT article. It's a topic my husband and I discuss a lot. We have to be active on the home-front FIRST and then reach out. It's hard to keep that in perspective sometimes. But, I have to say - this is something my parents did RIGHT. My dad is a pastor, but they made family a #1 priority - and we grew up respecting him, my mom, the ministry and when we strayed we never strayed far. We are now - all 3 of us - in full-time ministry. I attribute a great amount of that to their dedication to family. Thanks for linking up. This is an excellent article!

    1. Thanks so much Rosilind! Love that you have learned how to walk this out by your parents' example! Blessings!

  2. I love this. It's so easy to put what is most important last in our daily lives! we need to get back to more family time...

    1. That is so true! Thank you so much! Blessings!

  3. You're absolutely right! Family is our first and most important ministry. Since my husband and I work together for our church, it helps a lot, but we still need to focus more on family time. Before my little girl was born we had family prayer and worship time every week, but now it's gotten much harder to schedule both because of the baby, but also because we have more responsibilities AND husband's opened a mini grocery store & is all the time getting things set up there. Thank you for reminding me of all these ways we can refocus back on family time, Wendy. I needed this!

    1. Thanks Jelli! I so know what you mean. That is what actually prompted the conversation with my husband. We were finding it challenging to have family time and what we came to realize is that we need to make the time to have the time. Blessings!


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