I am a pastor's kid, and pastor's kids are sometimes referred to as "PK"s. I have to admit I didn't always like being a PK. Many times people expected pastor's kids to be perfect kids. I may have accomplished that until about the age of 10. And then there are times that my parents would probably say that I did everything I could to prove that I wasn't a perfect kid.
When I was a teen, most of my friends had a Catholic upbringing or no religious upbringing at all. They assumed that pastors, like priests, weren't allowed to have children, so the first hurdle in saying that my dad was a pastor was explaining that no, he didn't sin a whole bunch of times and have 8 children, but that he was allowed to have children because he was a pastor and not a priest. Then came the inevitable question "So you have to go to confession to your dad?" I would then explain that we didn't do confession, because we believed that you confessed your sins directly to God in your prayers and didn't necessarily have to go through a priest or pastor.
But,in listening to people pay tribute to my dad this afternoon at his celebration service of 41 years of ministry, I have to tell you that living with dad was a lot like living with God. It seemed like he knew EVERYTHING, and what he didn't know, my sisters told him. We didn't just get punished or a speaking to for our wrongdoings, we got sermons and Bible verses to read and learn and figure out how they could be applied to our particular transgression. Parents always say that there is no textbook on how to be a parent, but my Dad used the Bible as his textbook for life: how to be a good Christian, how to be a good husband, how to be a good father, etc. I still haven't found in the Bible where it said "Thou shalt not wear make-up until you are 16" or "Thou shalt not get your ears pierced until you are 18", but it must be in there in some form.
We also were not allowed to date anyone who wasn't a Christian, so I'd like to apologize to any boy in the general vicinity of my age who walked through the doors of our small churches over the years. Sorry that you immediately became dating material and were perhaps ogled throughout the service. We were always in churches with small congregations, so Christian boys were slim pickings, and I have to admit that I sometimes saw a church service as a "singles club".
As I became older, I know that I fell off my PK pedestal some times, and stumbled off of it more often than that. I know that sometimes my actions, my words, and my way of expressing myself embarrassed or disappointed my dad. I also know even more that my dad always loved me, even when I was clinging to my pedestal by my fingertips.
Today I was a PK again, but this time I was a Proud Kid. I was so proud to look around the church and see almost 300 people who came to pay tribute to my Dad and to honor him and thank him for his 41 years of ministry, a/k/a working for God. Those who read my blog know that I have struggled with positivity relative to my Dad having cancer, and the human in me still wants to hold onto him and not let him go. But the Christian in me knows he is ready to go, ready to go meet his Boss, the Boss he has never seen in all these years, but the One he has worked for so faithfully and the One he has introduced to so many others directly or indirectly. And this Proud Kid was reminded of that today, sitting there, listening to the kind words spoken, the letters that were read, and hearing about the difference my Dad has made in so many lives. It was like the feeling I get watching my children in their concerts, their hockey games, and other times they've been recognized. It was seeing my Dad's name at the top of the list of jobs well done, and I am so excited for him to hear those words from his Boss "Thank you for a job well done, my son." You done good Dad!