Ministry & Family
Written by Linus Koe
I have had the unique privilege of serving the church as Family Ministry Staff, with the Media and Comms portfolio, for the last two years full time, and as a Family Ministry Apprentice/Intern for two years and nine months before that in a part-time capacity.
Reflecting over the last two years, it is almost as if God had purposefully put me in the church staff to serve during this Covid season. My full-time contract began in Mar 2020, alongside Circuit Breaker, and as government measures are beginning to relax, my time as a staff member comes to a close. Although much of the work has been administrative in nature (e.g. bulletin, announcements, website, YouTube, Eventbrite, etc.), I’m sure that God, in His mysterious ways, had prepared me for it.
However, through close to five years of church ministry, it seems that God has been preparing me for something else – Family Ministry… to my own. “I don’t think there’s a mandate to be found in sacred Scripture that is more solemn than this one. That we are to teach our children the truth of God’s Word is a sacred, holy responsibility that God gives to His people. And it’s not something that is to be done only one day a week in Sunday school. We can’t abdicate the responsibility to the church. The primary responsibility for the education of children according to Scripture is the family, the parents”. – R.C. Sproul, Divine Mandate for Parents, ligonier.org
This quote has been a helpful summary of what the Faith at Home and Family Ministry has aimed to do in my time as staff. Throughout my time developing the Faith at Home program and Family Ministry vision, all the books, articles and sermons on ministry to families have greatly impressed upon me God’s great desire for the next generation of faith to know who He is and His works through the family. Parents are to “love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might… [and to] teach [His command] diligently to your children” (Deut 6: 5-7).
This isn’t anything new to our parents here in Zion Bishan. Almost all who have attended the Faith at Home sessions agree that parents are the primary influencers of the faith of their children. However, it is often in practice that we do not show this to be true. Parents are often challenged by other demands and the family discipleship is hardly high on our priorities. That’s where church comes in to constantly remind one another of God’s good plan for the faith of the next generation, and to encourage each other in obeying His command as our response to His great love towards us. I hope, by God’s grace, He will enable me to continue to do so outside of this official capacity as staff, as we are all called to do as members of the body of Christ.
Prioritising family discipleship looks different for each family. For my family, it looks like how we spend our time, and what we spend our time on together. My prayer is that Zion Bishan continue to cast this vision through our Family, Children and Youth Ministries. You don’t need to become a staff member to catch this vision, but it won’t hurt to try being one for a time! I thank God for all who have served alongside, encouraged and have been gracious to me and my family through these past years, and looking forward to many more ahead, even until Jesus returns!