Family relationships are work. Even in the greatest of families, with the most incredible amounts of love.
In the families where there is great struggle and tragedy, even stressful points of tension at seemingly drops of a hat, there are moments of great joy. Moments when personal issues and troubles, relatioal frustrations and differences on life and living... they are all set aside in the interest of showing care and concern for those we love, just because of the nature and foundation of the relationship.
I considered this yesterday afternoon and the power that such moments can have, when they happen.
They are disappointing when recognizing such a moment is needed
They are frustrating to wait in anticipation, as a hope is seemingly prolonged.
They are a joy to watch such moments unfold... when it finally happens.
Every time I consider the difficulties of family life, I wonder how pastors do it.
Then I remember the plethora of reasons pastors burnout out and end up leaving the ministry. They don't alsways do. Amidst the struggles and challenges of ministry are the struggles and difficulties that await when they come home. Frustrations with extended family, kids fighting over toys while it's still Christmas day and spouses upset with conversations that quickly took a turn downhill... whether the joke wasn't that funny, the sarcasm wasn't well received or the wrong answer was discovered wrong after being spoken.
Like the professional mechanic whose vehicles are the last to get worked on, or the plumber, whose wife's kitchen is the last to get fixed, so to pastors, perhaps more often than you and I both probably realize, can have difficulty keeping their families in healthy, emotional and spiritual states of existence.
All the more reason, we pray, this #associatePastorTuesday, for pastors battling family difficulties and frustrating relational tensions, whether in their immediate or extended households. Pray God would give wisdom in handingly whatever strains may exists, in the marriage or in parenint; in siblings or with in-laws. Pray for strength and rest, where matters and circumstances have lasted seemingly longer than anticipated or expected. For the short-lived moments of tension, pray for grace... that they would be quickly dismissed where they are not important and quickly resolved for real problems, avoiding the potential to become drawn-out indefinitely. May the challenges at home not dissaude, diminish or derail the efforts of ministry and the work of the church. Though the balance is hard, may God move on their behalf in all things.
To receive the glory and honor He is due
Both at home and at church
In the community, here on earth
Before the cloud of witnesses in heaven.
Displaying Christ, no matter who stands in front of them.
Just a man, attempting to fulfill God's plan. Husband, Dad, Dreamer. Blogger.