Stepfamilies comprise a significant portion of societies throughout the world. The unique dynamics of stepfamily living present many barriers to marital oneness and family harmony, which is one reason the divorce rate for blended family couples is 10-25% higher than couples in first marriages. When was the last time you taught a marriage course specifically for stepcouples? Have you modified your premarital ministry to help couples anticipate the unique challenges of stepfamily life?
Now you can join churches all over the world who are upgrading their marriage ministries to equip stepcouples to build homes of redemption. Take four steps:
Step 1 – Become educated about the unique dynamics of stepfamily living and learn the essential elements of blended family ministry. Suggested resource: Ministering to Stepfamilies DVD.
Step 2 – Share what you’ve learned with key leaders in your church and identify your leadership team. Also, share this Marriage Ministry Tip Sheet with your marriage ministry leaders and ask them to insert teaching for blended family couples into their educational programs.
Step 3 – Choose your ministry strategy: You might host a conference, start a small group Bible study, modify your existing marriage and parent training to address stepfamily realities, or do all of the above. Suggested resources for group or individual use: 1) Start with The Smart Stepfamily DVD Small Group Resource; and 2) then study The Smart Stepfamily Marriage.
For information on hosting a stepfamily conference with bestselling author Ron Deal click here.
Step 4 – Learn as much about blended families as you can and become familiar with the resources available. Start by reading The Smart Stepfamily, but become familiar with The Smart Stepmom, The Smart Stepdad, The Remarriage Checkup, and Dating and the Single Parent (for singles). Visit our online store to browse these resources.
1 – Marriage Ministry Tip Sheet (PDF)
“We started our stepfamily ministry in the fall. We have twenty or so couples who attend on a somewhat regular basis on Sundays and for monthly social activities…Several non-churched families attended the workshop and have started to attend the Sunday morning class. Many of our families have changed so much of what they do and how they act…Thank you so much. Marriages have been saved and even more important, some lives are being opened up by the Holy Spirit. — Dave Williams, Canton, Ohio