I think my last big take-away from the Orange Tour was this little concept.

Make it easy for parents to win!

In Think Orange, Reggie describes the four levels of parenting.

  1. Aware – These are parents who may be outside your church. Studies have shown that most parents are aware that the moral and even spiritual development of a child is their responsibility.
  2. Involved – These are parents who are in our churches. They’re around, maybe following Christ, but they’re not really doing anything intentional with their kids.
  3. Engaged – These are parents who are beginning to be intentional. They’re trying things that they’ve not done before.
  4. Invested – These parents get “it.” Whether you provide a plan or not, they’re going after it, developing spiritual champions.

Here is what I appreciated tremendously. Reggie shared that you’ll probably never get more than 20-30% of your parents to the invested level. As much as we’d like for it to happen, it’s just not going to happen. Set your expectations.

However, it’s possible to get a lot of parents to engage. It doesn’t take too much effort to take a parent who is doing nothing to start doing something… and this small change can produce huge results. We’ve got to celebrate the small changes. This is huge!

This is why this information was really refreshing for me. We’re in the process of developing a milestone family strategy and we’ll be putting a lot of effort into getting parents to engage with the plan. I would expect that the parents to truly engage in this strategy and follow it through are more likely to be invested parents. However, at the same time we’re panning to launch easy stuff, resources and opportunities to help parents do small things.

I guess it was just good for me to hear this stuff so that I know how to balance, that I don’t get frustrated by less people getting to the invested level where huge numbers are engaged.

I’ll leave you with one last quote that ties this all up and certainly rang a bell for me.

A family experience is not a family experience unless you answer this question. “How am I going to lead families to the next step.”

So, consider how everything ties to the next thing and in all of this, make it easy for parents to win!