4. Love your kids unconditionally. The greatest mistake pastors can make is to keep reminding their children of their sins. Pastor, the best way to chase your children away from their faith is to keep throwing their failures back in their face. Pastors have a tendency to show more grace toward strangers than they do their own children. The same unconditional love you show toward others is the same unconditional love you must show to your children. They will always struggle with personal issues, but so will you. And the same grace and unconditional love you expect God to show toward you is the same grace and unconditional love you should show to your children.
I recently heard a pastor comment on the homes of pastors that are broken and shattered behind the scenes. He asked, "If that guy's house is a joke, why would we give him God's house? If that guy can't keep his family together, then why in the world would we pay him full-time to tell us how we should raise our children?"
These are hard but honest questions that need to be asked. People are looking for leaders who understand what it means to lead a family into God's best. A pastor once told me that he has no responsibility to help his children once they turn 18 years of age. My response to him was to show me where the expiration date is in the Bible. As pastors, we have a responsibility to train up and lead our children until the day we die, plain and simple.
My encouragement for all pastors, ministers and missionaries is to take an honest assessment of your homes and ask God to help you in areas you know you can do better in. Yes, it takes honesty. Pastor, minister, missionary—God is ready to help you make the changes necessary in order to lead your family into God's abundant favor and blessings.
Richard M. Salazar Jr. is an author, public speaker and humanitarian. He is also the founder of Rich Communications, which is the home for his writing projects and two radio shows, Real Life with Richard and Leah and Cross Connection, which have been heard in the greater Southern California areas. Richard holds two degrees in marriage and family counseling and in organizational leadership and is currently working on his doctorate in strategic leadership. Richard is also a member of the American Association of Christian Counselors and is a certified specialist in sales and public relations with Achieve Global. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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