Jesus was with His disciples for the majority of most days. You may want to disciple your children like Jesus, but you have an obstacle: you need to generate income for your family.
Some parents are able to design a lifestyle that enables them to be with their children more. Some are able to be with their children all of the time. Here are ten employment options that can allow you to spend more time with your children:
10. Increase your options: reduce your expenses and debt. Reducing your expenses and debt can dramatically increase your employment options. With today’s cyber earning environment there are all kinds of ways to earn an income from your home, and if you work from home, your children could be home too! There would be no need to buy an expensive wardrobe, no need to pay for child care, no need to buy fuel to drive to work or to pay for lunches out. With the recent economic challenges, our family has found many ways to reduce our living expenses. We have cut out many non-essentials and are literally living on 1/2 of the expenses we “required” a few years ago. We have reduced our grocery costs through stocking up on sale items and using coupons, we drive used vehicles that are paid for, and we are saving on energy costs. Finding ways to save money can become a fun family project. Apply your savings to your debt and do whatever it takes to become debt-free.
9. Take your child with you to your job. A growing amount of employers allow parents to take their children with them to work. Doing this would allow you to be with your children during your travel to and from work. Then you would be physically near your child during the day. You would also be able to visit your child during your breaks.
8. Take a job nearer to home. Some parents are not able to work from home, but they choose employment that is near their home rather than taking a job that requires travel. I formerly had to travel once a week for a day or two. Now my present occupation requires almost zero travel. It may be necessary to trade more time at home for less pay.
7. Parents working different shifts. This may be my least favorite option because parents will find little time to be with one another. However, this can allow each parent to disciple their children for a shift, thus creating a full time discipleship lifestyle for their children. This choice could work well for a season or with one of the parents working part time.
6. Co-op with a trusted friend. If you are a single parent you could consider creating a “co-op” with a trusted friend. In essence you could partner with another parent to work and/or teach your children. You could take turns teaching while the other parent(s) work to generate income.
5. Find a job that allows you to work from home. Many employers these days allow employees to work at home. Many “virtual” jobs exist today in which the business does not have “brick and mortar.” Working from home could allow you the opportunity to be with your children all day long like Jesus was with His disciples! I have a friend who accepted a job that allows him to work from home on Mondays and Fridays. This extra time with his family has been a blessing to them.
4. Start a home-based business. If you are entrepreneurially minded, you could start a home-based business. There are numerous opportunities that exist over the internet. Many of these businesses can be performed any time of day. The beauty of this option is that you can involve your family in your business. You can disciple your children in education, business and ministry simultaneously! I recently read about a single mom who was able to earn an income in part by delivering newspapers with her children in the morning. She was able to keep her children home with her throughout their childhood. She struggled financially but is thankful now for the extra time she had with them.
3. Buy a business, and take your children with you to work. Consider the fact that the disciples were self employed at times in their ministry. Paul was a tent-maker; he worked in ministry while providing his own financial support. This option can provide an excellent opportunity to teach your children business and ministry skills. Provide your child some work space, your children can do their school work at your place of business.
2. Co-op with your parents by living with them. This idea may be the most “out of the box” approach. If your parents are serious about your children being discipled like Jesus, they could help with the effort. Grandparents are commanded to make disciples in Deuteronomy 6. You could live together to share expenses; doing so would give your children the added benefit of the godly wisdom that your parents possess. You could work fewer hours while your parents make disciples of your children.
1. One parent could quit their job. The parent who quits will have to give up the prestige of being employed. If you are earning a large sum of money, there will be a financial sacrifice. However as mentioned before, you would save money on your wardrobe, your child care, your fuel to drive to work and on lunches out. I have a friend who sold a more expensive home to enable him to be with his family more. Many parents who employ some of the ideas above will be able to make this lifestyle change.
When we started our most recent business we prayerfully sought out opportunities that would utilize our skills and experience, but would allow me to have a home office. I work from home on Mondays and Fridays, and from time to time our children will accompany me to business activities and meetings. My family answers business calls, and my wife helps with administrative tasks. My daughter writes business and marketing reports and my son schedules our social media postings and business listings. Our income has been lower, but the extra time with our family has been well worth it!
If you have decided to disciple your children, you will find a way. Some parents are able to design a hybrid of these ideas; the possibilities are endless! When you decide that the most important thing for your children is to become disciples of Jesus, the Lord will begin to give you creative ideas to accomplish your calling.
Article from Disciple Like Jesus