The Pastor must make sure he is faithful in the task to shepherd his family both individually as well as corporately. Jonathan Edwards, who is best known as one of America’s greatest pastors and theologians, modeled this faithfulness well. I would like to add faithful husband and father to the list of his accolades because of accounts like this written by one of Edward’s biographers, George Marsden. Apparently Edwards,
began the day with private prayers followed by family prayers, by candlelight in winter… Care for his children’s souls was, of course, his pre-eminent concern. In the morning devotions he quizzed them on Scripture with questions appropriate to their ages… Each meal was accompanied by household devotions, and at the end of each day Sarah joined him in his study for prayers.
Edward’s faithfulness to shepherd the souls of his family was affirmed in the long-term impact and kingdom fruitfulness of his eleven children that was evidenced long after he was gone. Edwards appeared to have had the wisdom and discernment to look to the future and see that this task was important—important enough for the sake of his children’s souls; important enough to say “no” to other ministry demands so he could focus on the souls of his family; and important enough that even in the midst of a very fruitful ministry, to make time for them.
Pastors, can the same be said of you?