Raising Pastors’ Kids

My kids are not better than yours cuz they are pastor’s kids. They are better than yours cuz they are better than yours.



Pastors’ kids have a bad reputation. This could be because pastors have bad kids.

It could also be that people have very high expectations for pastors’ kids. Every little misstep of pastors’ kids gets noticed and remembered and gossiped about.

I don’t know where the stereotype comes from in all honesty. I’ve known lots of pastors’ kids and I honestly don’t know any that I’d describe as being “bad.” I mean, kids are kids. Kids are by nature not good all the time. My kids have done bad things, some of which were observed by others. But anyone who knows my kids would say they are good kids.

I am not a person who likes bad kids, so I’d know it if my kids were bad.

My kids are, quite frankly, good kids. They get good grades, they don’t get in trouble at school, they have jobs, they are respectful to authority, and various other measures of kid goodness. My kids are beginning to move out of my house, one already has. My kids are not little anymore; they are young adults. And they are good kids.

Let me tell you one massive reason why they are good kids: because I’m a good father.

Yup, I went ahead and said it.

My kids were born like anyone else’s kids. They had their fair share of strengths and weaknesses. Two of them were hyper and nuts. One of them was quieter and more subtle with her nuts. But they were all nuts. It took a massive amount of time, patience, energy, and cardiovascular exercise to discipline my kids. I was all-in on my fathering. I was determined to win every battle of wills. No matter how long it took, I wore them out until they learned I was the boss.

I continue to be the boss. My kids know this is my house and as long as they are in my house I call the shots. I’m no dictator or bully. I’m just the guy who makes the decisions.

I have never compromised on making my kids go to church. Our church has services three days a week and each of my kids have gone to 95% of all those services in their lives. They miss occasionally for sickness and a couple events. There are no rewards in heaven for perfect church attendance. But my kids know that church is a priority in our family.

My kids know that faith is very important to me and church is part of the life of faith.

Something like 80% of church kids (depending on what study you listen to) leave the faith when they go to college. I am not shocked by that number at all. Most of the kids who “walk away from the faith” were kids I never assumed walked in the faith.

Watch the fathers on this issue. If the father views church as a priority his kids will probably grow up seeing church and faith as a priority. There are no guarantees, but if you play the odds, watch how the dad views church. Dads who think church is a waste of time and does pretty much anything else other than go to church, will have kids who “leave the faith.” Dads who think the pastor is a joke and a lesser man, will have kids who “walk away from the faith.”

It’s easy for pastors to go through the motion of going to church, to play the pastor role. Your kids will pick up on whether you sincerely want to be there and think it’s important. They will observe your faith outside of church more than inside and they can tell if you’re playing a game.

One main reason to be a good pastor and pursue spiritual growth is because your own kids are watching. No one else is. No one cares that your kids are good. People will just tell you “Well, your kids were easy to raise, mine are nuts.”

Faith is hard and people can tell if you’re walking by faith or not. Most kids don’t know what walking by faith means. But kids are watching and they are watching you. Show them how it’s done.

One way or the other you are leading them. Pastors need to live up to a high standard. Do this for the Lord, for His church, and for the children He’s given you.



One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?)
–1 Timothy 3:4-5

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