Enter Fridays from the Families. This series will run on Fridays (obviously!) and feature guest bloggers, some who I know in real life and some who I met online. I have a few lined up, and I have a few more in mind who I'll be emailing in the near future. And I'm thrilled to kick it off next week with Becky, who writes about life with Mozart, Picasso, and a Princess at http://paintingwithpicasso.blogspot.com! (I already have the post saved, and it is absolutely wonderful!)
Here's what I shared with each of the guest posters when I asked them to join us for this series:
The series will be one in which people with special needs and/or their family members share their successes and struggles with church and faith in light of their special needs. One trend I see is that churches who don't do special needs ministry have two reasons: (1) they don't know the realities and needs and/or (2) they are aware of the need but they don't know what to do or where to start. Letting those with special needs and their families offer their perspectives could help change that, I hope. And it can encourage those who are already working in special needs ministry.That description above gives you the gist of what I'm aiming for. It was, however, written to a parent of a young child, so I would adjust the suggestions for an adult with special needs who is posting or for another different family situation (such as siblings, parents with adult children, or spouses).
With that in mind, the options for topics are pretty wide open. Here are some possibilities, but it's certainly not an exhaustive list:
how your faith has changed or matured since your child with special needs was born/diagnosed, what church leaders should know about families and/or individuals with special needs and/or about your child's specific special needs, what has been more difficult at church for your family since you had a child with special needs, why it's important for you to be able to go to church and know that your child with special needs is being loved and cared for in children's ministry, what your spiritual goals are for your child (and how those do/don't differ from the goals you have for your children), what has/hasn't worked for your family at church, what advice you would offer to other parents who want to be involved with church but aren't sure how to do that with a child with special needs, or what ways you could see (or have seen) churches minister to families with special needs beyond Sunday morningI know that's a long list, and I certainly wouldn't expect any single guest blogger to take on the full list! Basically, ANY topic related to special needs ministry and/or parenting a child with special needs would be fantastic. If there's something entirely different that you think would make a great post instead of any of the ideas listed above, feel free to run with that instead.
If you would be interested in guest posting for this ongoing series or if you know someone who would, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.