Parenting Baby Steps with Kara Powell

Today we have a guest post from Kara Powell, the Executive Director of Fuller Youth Institute and author of several books (including Essential Leadership, Deep Justice in a Broken World, and Help! I’m a Woman in Youth Ministry), who flew in recently and wrote about her experience with the Orange staff. You can read more from her here.

Last week I got to spend 24 hours with the great leadership team of reThink in Atlanta, Georgia.  I first met Reggie Joiner last fall and we had a great connection.

With Reggie’s team, we had a great discussion about how to best engage with parents.  The reality is that parents are the primary influence on their kids – far more influential than church leaders.  And yet the last thing parents need is to be motivated by a sense of guilt or a long “to do” list of all the behaviors they should be doing that feels overwhelming.  It feels overwhelming because it is overwhelming.

Reggie gave me the new book he co-authored with Carey Nieuwhof called Parenting Beyond Your Capacity.  I love their definition of  spiritual leadership for parents:  “Spiritual leadership means parents assume the primary responsibility to help their kids take the next step in their pursuit of a relationship with God.”

It’s one step forward.

That reminds me of an invitation at our church that we’ve extended – help one person who doesn’t know Jesus yet take one step closer to Him.

I love that focus on “one step forward”.  It’s so do-able and motivating, while not being overwhelming.

What do you focus on in your ministry to help parents take another step?

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Orange Leaders
The Orange Group is a gathering of leaders who are passionate about engaging churches and families to influence the faith and character of the next generation. Contributors include some of the most widely respected thought-leaders in children’s ministry, including Reggie Joiner, Sue Miller, Kendra Fleming, Jim Wideman, and Bre Hallberg. New blog entries, podcasts, webcasts, and video downloads are available every week to help you keep leading yourself and growing with your team.