Welcome back to Sunday Morning Strategies, a series looking at ideas you can implement in your children’s ministry and church to be more accommodating to children from disrupted homes. In the last installment, we looked at some of the reasons it can be difficult to form relationships with kids from disrupted families. This week, we are looking at seven things you need to do in order to overcome the barriers and develop lasting relationships with children of divorce and children from separated homes.
1. Know Your Role
In trying to develop a relationship with children of divorce, it is important that you are clear about exactly what your role is. You cannot, nor should you try to, replace a parent who has left and/or abandoned the child. You can be a friend, an advocate, a teacher, a role model, a confidant and so much more, but you will never replace that missing parents. It is important to accept that and establish those boundaries from the get go.
When dealing with hurting kids, it is natural to want to make the pain go away. Unfortunately, that is neither your role nor the best thing for the child of divorce. Dealing with pain is key to grieving process, and one of the worse things you can do is try to “happy up” the child of divorce.