Last week we heard from Emmie’s mom, Gloria, on visiting Beijing as a tourist. If you missed it, you can find it here. This week Emmie trusted me with the responsibility of interviewing one of the coolest PKs (Pastor’s Kid) that we know… Zach!
So Zach, I’m sure a lot of people are curious about what it is like to be the pastor’s kid. But first tell us a bit about your family. Have your parents always worked in ministry? What kinds of different posts have they had?
Yes, my parents have always worked in ministry. My dad was a youth pastor, area pastor, head pastor, and consultant pastor.
And if my math is correct, your family has been in Beijing for about two years after leaving the United States. How did life as a pastor’s kid in the U.S. compare to it here in China?
Life is easier in Beijing because we’re in a Christian bubble since we are homeschooled. Also, God has blessed us ever since we accepted his calling.
Yes, life in the Christian community in Beijing can definitely feel like a bit of a “Christian bubble” at times. It can for sure be a blessing, too! What do you do to make sure you don’t get trapped in that “Christian bubble?”
In 6th and 7th grade, my parents felt that they should put me in public school. Through this, I have seen a glimpse of the real world. Also, ever since our family moved to China, we have literally gone out and seen the world.
Stepping out into unfamiliar territory is for sure a great way to interact with the world around us. And often when we do, we encounter some misconceptions about who we are. What are some common misconceptions about pastor’s kids? How do other kids and teenagers typically respond when they hear what your parents do?
Common misconceptions of PK’s are that they are always supposed to be good, know all the Sunday school answers, be really spiritual, and be “goody-goodies.” People assume we have nothing to do with anything seen as “bad.”
When telling another person what your parents do, the response really depends on what type of person he or she is. For example, if I were to tell an atheist what my parents do, they would probably say, “that’s nice.” Or if I were to tell a Christian from a different denomination that my parents are pastors, they would probably also misunderstand us…or think we are crazy.
Yes, I can imagine those misconceptions can put pressure on you. What are some of the other difficulties associated with being in a pastoring family? What are some of the perks?
Well, there are some pros and cons to being in a pastors’ family. One con of being a PK is spiritual warfare, causing us to be annoyed or frustrated with one another. Also, being a pastors’ kid, kids at school will specifically not talk about certain things around you, like gossip, drama, etc… But I guess you can work that to your advantage!
Some pros to being a PK are that I have an amazing family and God blesses us. Having parents that are mature Christians, I have the opportunity to talk to them about issues and break strongholds and lies. Also, God blesses us with unbelievable travel opportunities, and really cool miracles that we get to witness.
Amazing! I admire how you are able to recognize the spiritual influence in those struggles with each other and on your own. Let’s look more into how spirituality intertwines with being a PK. How does life as a PK contribute to your own faith journey?
My parents have always encouraged us to have a real relationship with God, but never forced it on us. By them encouraging us, I started my relationship with Jesus, and have been so thankful for my parents ever since. Also, they are constantly praying the enemy off of our family. By doing so, it makes my walk with God easier, because I don’t have to deal with as much spiritual warfare.
What a blessing! And the opposite question: Does being a PK ever present difficulties in coming to know God on your own?
Ever since I really started to know God, there have been challenges in my life. Some of these challenges can be daily, like not eating that candy bar because it’s Dad’s, or going out of my way to welcome the new kid at youth group. But on the other hand, they can be hard, like leaving your home and your friends to move to a foreign country
That definitely is a hard one to face and I have wondered what it is like for PKs to move around for their parents’ ministry. Finally, how would you encourage PKs who are younger than you in their own individual faith journey?
Don’t be afraid to talk to your parents and do your devotions.
Short and sweet advice! Well, Zach, you have definitely given some great advice into what it is like to be a pastor’s kid. I admire your spiritual maturity and ability to see how all things, good and bad, have that spiritual influence to them. Thanks so much for sharing!