Monday, October 3, 2016

Families in Pain & How Your Church is the Hands and Feet of Jesus

So, what does your church do when a family in your church or the family of a grandparent in your church has a marriage which falls apart? When this happens, the parent with the children - dad or mom - will need your support. The grandparents will as well, because they are likely spending more time with their grandchildren to help care for them when the parents are at work. How do you support the parents and grandparents? If you leave them on their own to figure this all out, you are missing a huge opportunity to be the hands and feet of Jesus. They need your help. They need your prayers. They need your encouragement. They need you. Be there.

And what about the children? They are likely experiencing great pain and show it through being sad and angry. It is entirely possible their mom or dad moved out of their home - left them and they are experiencing tremendous pain. Do you just "brand" them as "problems" and "keep their call numbers handy, so you can call the parent or grandparent who brought them when they act out"? Yes, I understand a child who is angry and/or sad can be a lot to handle, but these children have definite needs. They need to see they are loved - even when they are sad and angry. And if the church can not offer this unconditional love to them, it is absolutely NOT being the hands and feet of Jesus. They need your patience. They need your prayers. They need understanding. They need you. Be there.

Plus, if you call the parents or grandparents who brought the child to come get them, you are taking the opportunity for them to have a few moments of respite. A few moments to connect with the others in their class. A moment to sit in a service and worship with others.

If you have not thought about what you would do when families fall apart and the children are in your ministry, put it at the top of your to-do list for this week. Remember you are the hands and feet of Jesus and families - parents, grandparents and children who are experiencing this great pain need you. Don't turn them away.

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