The ups, downs, and messy muddle of trying to juggle family, work, and faith. You might think being a Team Vicar gives me a one-way ticket to harmony, but trust me, life's a rollercoaster for me too. I've got three energetic boys (6, 4, and a 10-week-old) and a wife, Becky, who's my partner in this crazy ride.
Picture this: mornings are a blur of spilt breakfast and lost shoes, afternoons involve Lego minefields, and evenings often end with the two of us flat out on the sofa. It's beautiful chaos, no doubt. But there are moments when I wonder if I've got it all together. Truth is, none of us do – and that's okay.
So, how does faith fit into this whirlwind? Well, it's not always a fairy-tale where I have all the answers. Faith is what keeps me going when the going gets tough. It's those quiet prayers in the middle of chaos, those deep breaths when patience runs thin, and those hugs that remind me I'm not alone in this.
Now, let's talk real – faith doesn't make the mess disappear, but it gives me the strength to try handle it with grace. Here are a few down-to-earth faith tips that might help you too:
Morning Moments: Before the day kicks off, take a moment – even if it's just a minute – to centre yourself. It might be a short prayer, a deep breath, or simply setting a positive intention for the day ahead.
Messy Prayers: Your prayers don't have to be perfect. Sometimes, they're a messy mix of gratitude, frustrations, and hopes. Just like life.
Family Huddles: Gather for a quick family huddle. Share a moment of gratitude or a funny story from the day. It's a small way to weave faith into your family routine.
Accept Imperfections: You're not a superhero, and that's absolutely fine. Embrace the messiness of life, knowing that it's the imperfect moments that make it real and beautiful.
Community Connection: Reach out to others who might be walking a similar path. It could be a friend, a fellow parent, or someone from your church. Sharing experiences lightens the load.
Quiet Reflection: Find a few minutes of quiet, whether it's during a lunch break or when the kids are napping or at school. Use this time to reflect, recharge, and reconnect with your faith.
Bedtime Blessings: If you've got kids, bedtime is a blessing in many ways. So share a simple blessing or prayer with them. It creates a sense of comfort and routine.
Here's the truth – some days are a complete mess. Work meetings clash with dinner chaos, and faith feels distant. But it's in those messy moments that faith shines the brightest. It's about finding the divine in the midst of chaos and knowing that you're capable of handling it.
So, let's embrace the realness of this journey. Family, work, faith – they're all part of the mix, and there's no one-size-fits-all formula. You're doing better than you think, and remember, you've got the faith to guide you through even the messiest of days.
Revd Adam Childs