When we are in the middle of it we never think about it. We don’t normally stew over it. It isn’t that big of a deal. But, later, now that’s a different story.
Its time. Its time we can’t get back, experiences that we cannot recapture. I was thinking about this the other day while standing in the shower. My daughter is almost seven. My son is four and a half. I thought about holding my eight month old nephew. I thought about how I have a hard time remembering those moments with my kids. Those moments won’t be making a return appearance. I can’t get them back.
Then, I thought about the stress of my life. I thought about the time I put into our church planting team, trying to make a successful go of this. When I shut my Macbook for the day, how do I invest in the most important thing I have going? Does my family feel like they get the best of me or do they feel like they get my leftovers? How often do my kids hear, “Can you guys go upstairs and play? Daddy’s tired.” I haven’t kept count, but I know it is a lot. I have always said that my family has to come before my ministry because if my church looks at my family life in ruin, what does that communicate about my ministry? But, I haven’t always practiced what I preached. More importantly, I don’t ever want my kids or wife to resent the church because of my mismanagement of my priorities. This struggle isn’t just a ministry problem. Most guys out there with families find themselves in the same struggle. Its the struggle that comes with thinking that by working our lives away we are actually helping our family by providing them with a better life. When set up against the thing our families need most, which is us actually present in their lives, we feel tension.
Do you feel the tension? How do you balance work and family?