To those of us with children….
Here’s what I’ve discovered as I’ve been trying to love on and minister to others while I raise kids: Kids make it easier.
Sometimes they make it harder. (Like, it’s harder to load everyone up and take everyone to an event when you have a nursing baby and two in diapers and one who’s potty training and one with a runny nose…) Your family comes FIRST, so make sure you’re meeting their needs first before you run out and start ministering to others.
But…if you have kids…please don’t use that excuse to avoid all other ministries. There are simple ministries you can be involved in and your kids can make it easier for you because their cute little selves can break the ice with the people you’re ministering to. They give you something to talk about besides the weather.
In case you missed it, I wanted to share Kari’s comment from this post:
Let’s not miss the fact that our children are little ministers too: children with a mission. I find all the time that my baby is a “conversation starter” if you will. I get to say things like, “I am so blessed to have this baby in my life” and “God is so good” just in response to some simple questions about the cute kid in my cart.
So, if you have kids…minister with them.
The first time I realized that kids were little ministers was on a tragic day that our friend’s husband was killed in a farming accident. Asa was a baby at the time and we went to see the grieving family. I was trying my hardest to keep Asa quiet and still in my arms while we hugged the family and visited. Finally I decided to put him down to crawl because he was getting restless in my arms. He immediately crawled over the the woman who had just lost her husband. Inwardly I cringed, thinking that the last thing this woman needed was a wiggly nine month old to crawl into her lap and slobber on her.
She reached down and picked him up, snuggled him, talked to him…and then guess what she did? She smiled.
Asa, as a nine month old innocent baby, brought joy and comfort to this woman who had just lost her husband.
After that moment, I have worked to involve my kids as much as I can when I do something for others.
If you are taking a meal to someone, let them help you cook. Talk with them about what you are doing. Ask them questions like, “We’re taking dinner to Johnny’s family. What kind of yummy food do you think Johnny would like?”
Encourage them to make cards for people. Who wouldn’t love a homemade card from your kids?
Help them learn to be comfortable around older people and sick people.
Use wisdom of course in involving your kids….but I really think that the best way they will learn to see people’s needs and meet them is by watching you and working with you. By the time they are adults, serving others will be natural to them.
Have you found that your kids (or someone else’s kids) are good conversation starters when you visit with people? What are some ways you’ve involved your kids in ministries?
Join Amy for Finer Things Friday.