I loved this book. While I never was a PK myself, I did raise three. Thirty years ago, in the throes of parenting this resource would have helped us immensely. Reading it made me long for some do-overs and also encouraged me in things we appeared to get right in our home.
The tag line in the title itself grabbed me: The Pastor’s Kid: Finding Your Own Faith and Identity. Every parent should have the goal that their kids “find their own faith and identity.” Yet when a kid is raised in the looming shadow of the church house and a father who has God as his boss, this can be tricky. Their OWN faith and their OWN identity can be very murky.
Barnabas Piper speaks honestly, simply and clearly about life as a PK. He is direct but gentle. His insights might be wake-up calls to parents raising PKs, plus will be eye opening to churches when they get a glimpse of this journey.
Reading this book may help you and your husband build a healthy culture in your home or make critical course corrections or even engage your own PK to confess unconscious missteps.
I want to entice you in two ways:
First with some powerful excerpts.
On a purely lifestyle level, one of the greatest challenges PKs face is scrutiny. It feels perpetual and persistent even invasive.
It creates a tension in which it can be difficult to genuinely make ourselves known, and so PKs become both the best known and the least-known people in the church.
PKs want to be known not just known of.
PKs have a complicated relationship with the church.
One of the greatest challenges PKs have is being forthright about frustrations and hurts.
The constant pressure to be something, do something and believe something creates enormous confusion for PKs.
Some words to parents….
• Don’t counsel, converse. We know when our parents are giving us “pastory” answers. We want parent answers. We want and care and curiosity, not counsel from the book of Romans.
• Leave the sermons in the pulpit. Most of the time pastor’s slip into preaching mode without realizing it. We need conversations. Relate to us. Talk with us. Ask questions. Tell stories.
• Apologize and repent for specific mistakes and sins. Genuine, specific apologies are what PKs need from our parents. We know our parents flaws better than anyone. And when they are not acknowledged and repented of, they are a breeding ground for bitterness.
• Laugh, play and be affectionate. To a child, play is love. I felt loved when my dad played with me and took me on adventures.
• Let me wonder and even wander. I don’t mean that all boundaries and parenting efforts should be forsaken; that would be foolish. But we need emotional and relational space to BE different.
Secondly with special Kindle price on Amazon.
A good sale price is a second great incentive to read this book. Amazon has dropped the e-book price to $3.03 and the print price to $8.66! Price only good through Sept.12th. Jump on it.
Make the investment for your child’s sake.
All Things Family, The Flourish Bookshelf
Published September 10, 2014