SURELY WE ALL KNOW what a PK is—a preacher’s kid. Raising PKs is similar to raising any other kid, and they should not be made to feel that they are “different” from others! They need to abide by the principles of integrity that every other child should follow. So what can we do to help them? Communication is one of the most important tools.
Talk to them. Keep communication open. Help them understand that they can trust you. Talk to them when they are very young—they love to talk when they’re little! They will be more likely to continue communicating if they are in the habit of communicating with you all along.
Listen to them. Many children (especially in their teens) say, “My parents don’t listen to me—they just preach at me.” When they share something they want to do that you think is a “wild” idea, it is tempting to immediately blurt out some words of wisdom, but don’t—just listen. Let them talk about it while you listen, occasionally nodding your head or making a comment, showing that you hear them. Try to not show anger or impatience. Later on in the day (or even the next day—choose the right time!) say, “You know, I was thinking about our conversation earlier today (yesterday). Have you thought of how it might work out if you did _____?” Then gently make a few suggestions, thus leading your child to think it through again, making wiser decisions.
Pray for them. There is one thing I wish I had done more of when our children were young: I wish I had prayed more for them. Spend time praying for your children—in your quiet times with the Lord, at the kitchen sink, in the car, or wherever (Deuteronomy 6:7). The only thing that lies within our ability is to cooperate with God—He is the One who has the power to influence them. And always keep in mind Galatians 6:9: “Do not let yourselves get tired of doing good. If we do not give up, we will get what is coming to us at the right time” (NLV).