Since a young age, I have been playing various sports. It was something I enjoyed doing and over time developed into a descent athlete. As a PK, my parents (and especially my father) were very busy with ‘church stuff’. If you’re a PK, you’ll understand this: meetings, services, weddings, funerals. It really is a busy schedule, which can create conflicts for a busy sports schedule.
Maybe you’ve been there:
It’s gameday and you’re so excited for your dad to come and watch you play. You almost can’t contain the anticipation of seeing your father in the stands cheering you on. As the game begins you sneak a glance to the bleachers…as you look back and forth quickly you don’t see him. You think, “Oh well, I’m sure he’ll show up soon.” By the end of the game, you’re exhausted and pretty disappointed. It was a good game, but no dad. As you walk to the parking lot, you see a church board member pulling in and motioning for you to get into their car. You find out your dad had a meeting that he had forgotten about. Although you nod your head in understanding, deep inside you feel ignored and neglected.
As sad as that story might be, it is true for many PK’s. The ministry becomes the priority over a pastor’s family. I am very fortunate that this story is not my story. Throughout the numerous sports seasons, one constant I had (besides my good looks and sweet skills) was at least one of my parents being in the stands cheering me on. And not just cheering, but they were always there after the game to encourage me when I was down and celebrate with me when I did well.
I can’t tell you the impact this one, little thing has had on my life. The fact that I knew I could look up in the middle of a game, even away games, and know one of my parents would be there beaming with pride for their son meant so much. It gave me confidence but also affirmed the hard work I had put in to be good at that particular sport. Although my father was very busy, there was never a question whether my father’s ministry took a priority over myself, my sister, or my mother. Ministry was, and is, very important to our family…it’s our passion, but it was not our highest priority.
The Lesson I’ve Learned: Although we are called by God into ministry, we are first placed by God into a family…to be true to your call, you must put a priority on your family.
[By the way, my favorite sports moment growing up was winning a bet with my dad in a Rec. Soccer Game by scoring 3 goals in one game…he paid up and bought me my favorite meal, 3 tacos from Taco Bell!]