What's it like being a pastor's kid? Hint: It's not "all hugs and flowers and puppies and rainbows," says Barnabas Piper, son of popular theologian John Piper. He plans to reveal more this summer, in a warts-and-all response to the common question, when his new book simply titled The Pastor's Kid releases.
Barnabas recently explained why he decided to write the book about this niche group of people in a post on his blog at barnabaspiper.com.
In the spring of 2012, he was asked to write an 875-word response to the question for Table Talk Magazine, he said. He began drafting the response while stuck on a commercial flight. However, he realized what he had to say was too much for one article.
"After just a couple paragraphs I knew the 875-word limit I had been given wasn't enough. I sat in my seat turned my face toward the window, and cried," wrote Barnabas.
"I didn't expect to remember so much and feel so vividly. I was roiling inside with hurt and anger but also a yearning to fix this. Something needed to be said, to be done. It was overwhelming. Writing a simple article felt inadequate, but it opened the lid on something I recognized as much larger, at least for me," he said.
He explained that when the article was published he got an overwhelming response.
"PKs reached out to me to express their appreciation for making known their feelings and putting them into words. Pastors responded with thank-yous and apologies as well as questions. I began connecting with PKs from around the country and getting their stories. It didn't take long to realize it wasn't just me who felt deeply and remembered much. As many jokes as were thrown around about PKs, nobody was helping them or even listening," said Barnabas.
"My hope is that PKs will find a community and a voice. Too many of us have suppressed, unexpressed crap in our lives that needs expulsion. But we need more than that. Venting and flushing aren't enough," said Barnabas.
"We need to understand the depth of God's grace and the power of it to heal and change. We need to realize our own responsibility to stop blame-shifting and do some things differently. I hope pastors will read this and find a window into the hearts and minds of their kids and see a need for changes," he added.