Redefining Family with Jeremy Pryor (Part Two)
Inside This Episode
Now that we understand the issues with raising children and creating a family in a hyper-individualistic culture, Eric and Family Teams coach Jeremy Pryor focus on the practical ways we can improve our families by creating multigenerational teams on mission.
Learn more about Family Teams: www.familyteams.com
Announcer: Today on Maybe God: part two of Eric's conversation with Jeremy Pryor, the co-founder of the Family Teams Ministry and author of Family Revision: How Ancient Wisdom Can Heal the Modern Family. In this interview, Jeremy offers his strategy for building a strong family culture that will last many generations.
Eric Huffman: What does God want for the family? How is God's vision for family distinct from this cultural vision that you've discussed so far?
Jeremy Pryor: You know, theologians like to talk about how important it is to look at when a concept is first mentioned in Scripture, because oftentimes in the origin story of the concept you get its definition. And I definitely think this is true about the family.
So the first family we have, the first time it's described in the Bible is in Genesis 1. In Genesis 1, God creates the world and then He creates the first family, you know, male and female, and He brings them together. So Genesis 1 is really a poem that sort of theologically unpacks the meaning of creation. Then He says over the first family these words, "Be fruitful and multiply, fill the earth and subdue it, rule over all creation."
I think in that description you have the purpose of family, because God created a family for a reason. And He really lays out the reason. He's done work of creation. Like an incredible artist, He's made all of creation beautiful. And He just says over it, "This is so good. This is beautiful. This is good."
So He wants the goodness of creation to be spread across all of the world. He starts with this prototypical garden, Eden. And then He wants to see His presence, His order, His beauty expanded across the earth. So what He does is He creates a family. This is very strange. Because if we had a job like this to do, I think we would create a nonprofit, we'd create a business, we'd create a government. The last thing we would think of if we had a job this enormous would be to create a family. So the family has a mission.
But He wants them to do it together. He doesn't give it to an individual. He gives it to the family. But then He gives them a mission so enormous, that it can't be accomplished in one generation. That somehow this mission has to be passed on from one generation to the next. And that can only be accomplished through a whole bunch of generations with lots of children, lots of multiplying, lots of family.
So what's His definition of family then? It's a multi-generational team on mission. I think that's the most simple way to say it. And this is totally different idea of family than the Western idea of family. So we talked earlier that a family is a springboard for individual success and is a nest. But if in Genesis 1 the family is a multi-generational team on mission and so instead of a nest, we're a team, imagine the difference.
One of the things that I think Western culture really has preserved very well is when you join a team, like all of a sudden, all of the rules change then sacrifice becomes noble. So if you go to a counselor, and you say, "Oh, I'm sacrificing for my co-workers. I'm sacrificing for my family," they'll say, "Whoa, whoa, whoa, that's unhealthy. You need to think about yourself. What do you need?"
But if you're on a team, if I'm playing in a football team and I'm struggling and I tell the coach, "I'm sacrificing," he say, "Yeah, that's what we're doing here. We're all sacrificing. We're all equally working together for this goal." Like all of a sudden, in a team, the sort of almost the ideas about how sacrifices is perceived is turned upside down and it becomes beautiful to everyone. And we just love watching it. And we can't stand it when we see somebody being hyper-selfish. So yeah, these are such different pictures.
Eric Huffman: Are you saying that the element of sacrificing for one's family is lost in the worldview of family, and it almost seem like made out to be a grievance or a form of oppression and if we were to reclaim this mission you're talking about or this vision of family that maybe sacrifice could be reclaimed with it?
Jeremy Pryor: Yes. The idea of roles, the idea of sacrifice, again, these are ideas that everyone celebrates once you join a team. These are ideas that if you start to talk about outside of the context of team are deeply unhealthy. Again, if you go to a counselor and say, "I'm just trying to live into my role. It doesn't really feel like it fits really well. I'm doing all the sacrificing and I feel like I'm losing myself," immediately you're gonna get the advice that "Hey, hey, hey, that's unhealthy. That's toxic." So you can see the difference. But it depends on the context.
Because we don't think family is a team, then I think all that advice is actually good advice. Like if the family is a springboard for individual success and my family is getting in the way of my individual success, it's unhealthy and toxic for the family to continue to try to get me to play a role to sacrifice for the group, like all of that becomes unhealthy.
But if the family is a team, then again it reverses all those things. If I'm playing my role, if I'm sacrificing, these things then become beautiful and everyone celebrates them on a team. And that's why I think we have to take this crazy step back and say, "What is a family?" And actually admit maybe we don't even know what a family is.
Eric Huffman: So I noticed in your definition... Your definition as I understand is it's a multi-generational team on mission. That's the basic definition of family. There's no explicit sort of definition of multigenerational. Does that have to mean bloodlines? I mean, obviously, you allow for adoption to be a part of this. What about inviting lonely friends into your family system? How does that look in today's world?
Jeremy Pryor: I really think that that was redeemed in the New Testament. Because I think until you get to the New Testament, it was very bloodline obsessed. And something very unique happened because the story the gospel actually created... It didn't change the definition of family. What it did is expanded the family in the way you're describing.
So you turn the page from the Old Testament, the New Testament, all of a sudden, we're given greater revelation about the story itself. And one of the things being described to us is God is our Father, that He is trying to build this new family called the church, and that He's adopting us into His family because He was with the Jews, and He's now extending that to the Gentiles and we're all adopted into the family of Abraham.
All of this New Covenant understanding, again, it doesn't replace the family but it does create this beautiful picture that allows the family to be extended beyond what the strict bloodline families as they were described in the Old Testament.
Eric Huffman: That's awesome. And the second word at Team is intentional view as well. You could have said unit, you could have said patriarchy, you could have said hierarchy, whatever. You said team for a reason. What is that reason?
Jeremy Pryor: Because if you think about kind of going all the way back to the garden, you see immediately, the children like Cain and Abel, and of course, all of us have experienced this, that our children are wired very differently. You know, husbands or wives are wired differently. And that is such an important... Like, how do you all work together if you all have these different...? It's not a bug, it's a feature. Like we all have different gifts.
So every single time God blesses our family with a new child, it's like if you were doing the NFL draft. You know, God's like, "You need all of the things that this child has that I'm going to place in his or her soul and in his or her abilities. Your family team needs that."
So a lot of times when we're talking to families about trying to even uncover their unique mission or their calling or assignments, oftentimes you discover that through learning the different teammates that God has placed on your team. And this is an incredible picture because imagine if every family thought this way.
This also makes sense of why it's so beautiful to have more children. Like really in individualistic culture, the more children you have is sort of like carving up a very fixed pie. There's very understandable reasons why as the more individual we get, the less children we have. But if the family is a team, then yeah, you can certainly have a team with a very few number of players and that works great. And there's great expressions of that. But I think you would always celebrate, "God... wow, look, He just brought a new member in your team. Isn't that amazing? What does that mean? What does that mean we're gonna get to do as a family?"
Eric Huffman: Yeah. I also love and appreciate how you extrapolate that point out even further in some of your work about men. Because something about being on a team lights most men's fire. It's like we're designed for it. We're made for it. We come alive when we're a part of a team. We have a role on a team.
Gosh, I don't think I've ever felt more alive than when I got to coach my son's little league teams. If I could do that as a full-time job, I would. Because I'd make a draft board. They're like six years old. I'm like totally just objectifying their skill sets and sizing up their parents to see how much trouble or help they might be and try and make a whole season-long strategy for winning. And then I go home and I'm not half as intentional about winning at home with my own team at home. But that just tells me we have this instinct that's just waiting to be sparred.
Jeremy Pryor: That's right.
Eric Huffman: And that's what I think is so good about your work. The last word in that definition is mission. So we have a multi-generational team on mission. And actually "on mission" is an important word too because you don't say "as mission".
Jeremy Pryor: That's right.
Eric Huffman: You say "on missions." Just kind of flesh that out for us real quick.
Jeremy Pryor: Yeah, thanks for saying that. Because I think that there is a confusion. I would say that most people or most believers who are really on fire for mission and they had a family did in the last 100 years, you know, family and a mission, where family is the thing I do over here, missions over here. That was probably most dramatically lived out by like Billy Graham, who talked about it a lot towards the end of his life, how he would leave his family for six months at a time to be on mission and how this was actually celebrated. It was celebrated by the missionary movement for the last 150 years in a Protestant church. It's very unfortunate, but that's the family and admission paradigm.
There was a time when Billy Graham said he was driving home and he saw this girl playing in the meadow and said, "Who is that?" And somebody said, "Oh, that's your daughter." The height of irony to me was that his son ended up taking over his ministry. I think that the reason why we did family and mission is because we mistakenly thought it was more strategic. We don't need Billy Graham's family. We only need Billy. The family is a distraction. Ironically, the legacy of that ministry is now in the hands of his son. So that doesn't always happen that way, but man, we need to wake up to that.
Then there's family as mission, which I think is increasingly something people are considering, which is sort of like, maybe the mission is just to raise a good and beautiful family, and maybe just, you know, find some property somewhere. And yeah, I'll be a dad and I'll be with my family. Then that is a beautiful picture.
We exist for others. Our families are blessed to be a blessing. When God called Abraham, he didn't call Abraham to just build a family and be a family apart. He built him and he called him to be a family to bless other families. So being a multi-generational family on mission is about like, Okay, we have to accept and embrace that I'm raising a team multi-generationally to do something in the kingdom of God. And that if I don't take my team onto the field and actually play the game, then what's the point of being a team at all?
Eric Huffman: I really appreciated that because I have always had this instinct that marriage is about mission and every marriage should have a mission statement. During premarital counseling, you know, seasons of life I'll lead them through that process. Usually, I'll read the mission statement they have at their wedding as part of the sermon at their wedding. It's a really beautiful moment. But as far as the family at large, I don't think I've ever quite as much thought about a mission statement for a family. Would you say that every Christian family, let's say, should have the same mission? Or does the family discern its own mission and declare it and then rally around it?
Jeremy Pryor: That's a great question. Well, certainly, it's important to start by saying that the family does come preloaded with a mission. So in Genesis 1, it says, "Be fruitful and multiply, subdue and rule." How do you express that? I think that that mission was recast in Matthew 28 by Jesus when He says, "Go and make disciples of all nations and teach them to obey everything I've commanded you." It's the same mission, right? Because making disciples is essentially being fruitful and multiplying and subduing and ruling is about bringing all of the world under the command of the ruler, the king... You know, Jesus is King.
So you can make children through making disciples and you can make children by having children and making them disciples. But we have that mission. We all are on the same mission to make disciples. And that's really the fruitful, multiply, subdue, and rule.
Now the ruling part of that where a family actually begins to become a ruling family, where there are resources or assets or ministries or callings that we're stewarding as a family and that we're bringing God's order into the world, we're expressing the kingdom of God through our family into the world, I think that is something that can look very unique depending on your family. So what are those callings?
Sometimes we like to think, okay, there are assignments. So some families have assignments that are temporary or that are seasonal. Then there are larger missions that sometimes families are given that are maybe like to go after a particular ill in society, to build up a church in an area, to go after their neighborhood, and really be a light. To articulate what it means to take your family on to the field and actually what it means to [inaudible 00:14:07].
Because I think that one of the reasons why men and women, but men especially, find sports so intoxicating is because it's so clear what the mission is. And that is so exciting. Like you know who's won the Super Bowl. When they catch the pass and they score a touchdown, I know that that's worth six points. So I think we owe it to our families to try to increase the resolution on the mission.
Eric Huffman: Wow, to bring clarity. Clarity brings momentum. I agree 100%. What does the family or a father even do when they know it's time to change course but they've never been a part of a family like the one you're describing, their family growing up wasn't like that, they've never even seen it up close? There's somebody's listening right now and they're like, "All right, I want to give this a go." What are the first few steps that you take to change course in such a dramatic way if you've never introduced these principles to your family life before?
Jeremy Pryor: I have a huge heart for this because I think that when you are building a family as a nest and a springboard for individual success, all the tools for family building in our culture are designed around that idea. Schools are designed to atomize the family into its individual components and school them. Sports are designed not to be family sports. We're going to take the family and spread and as individuals, shopping, and hobbies. Lots of church ministries tend to break down the family into its individual components before it does anything.
The problem is, if you adopt this definition of family, you're going to open your toolbox for, "Okay, cool, I want to build a family as a team." Toolbox is going to be empty. We've been talking about like, how do we fill the toolbox? What are the basic tools that somebody can get ahold of to actually create this kind of a family?
There are many, many tools that we talk about at Family Teams, but I always like to talk about three basic tools that are probably the ones that initially you can do. We'll get deeper into these. I'll tell you real quick. One is to craft a family mission statement. So you do know what you're doing, you do know how to score. And that oftentimes will include also creating kind of family values or we like to call them pillars because you want to create a certain kind of family culture. And this creates that identity, that bet of identity where your children and you and your spouse will feel like you're a part of this family.
The second one is a family rhythm. One of the things that happens is that every other element of what crafts our day, our work, if we're on a team, our hobbies tend to go first and the family gets just the scraps that are leftover. So if you're going to live that way, it's very difficult to run a team.
There's probably not a lot of coaches that come to their team and just say, "Hey, everyone decide for themselves what time you have leftover and then we'll be a team on whatever that..." Because everyone's gonna have different time leftover. So there's no way you can coach a team if you don't actually craft a rhythm for when we do things together. Families today are not allowed to do that. You're not allowed to go to the school or the coach or the pastor and just say, "Hey, here's our family rhythm." So this is really difficult. So we talk about that proactively.
The third one is—and this is something we learned in Israel—was that if you craft a family meal, like a weekly family meal that is deeply reflective of your family culture and you experience that evening, not the weekday family meal oftentimes we talk about in the West, which is like, Let's catch up real quick before we all separate again, but no, let's just be a family for one evening a week, then you will not be able to stop a multigenerational family from forming.
We saw this in Israel. It's crazy on Shabbat all these kids in their 20s and 30s are all getting on buses, are all taking their young kids to their parents' house every single Friday night. And man, you do that, you craft that kind of a rhythm in your family where there's that much interaction that happens on a weekly basis, and it's the pinnacle of your week when you really get to enjoy the depth of relationships, that multi-generational family will happen through a tool that powerful even if you don't have a clean, clear vision for it.
Eric Huffman: Wow. You talk about the rhythm of life and how... You said it's like families are not allowed to chart their own course in a way and to have their time together. What's the way out of that? I know you've talked a lot about the importance of Sabbath. And that seems to be the biblical model of God's plan for us is to have a Sabbath day every week together. How have you seen that work in the context of real life?
Jeremy Pryor: Man, it's tough. Taking that kind of ground, you have to really be persistent. And you have to start small and be very steady in terms of how to do that. Oftentimes, that's how we've seen families really try to put a stake in the ground.
I do think that if you do choose, as a family, to keep a Sabbath day, and that is to say that one day a week, we're going to just experience things together, we're going to go deep into rest, we're not going to say yes to everything else. And of course, there's always going to be some exceptions. But I think that that's part of the process of learning how to lead a family is how do you get control of time. You have to lead time and you have to design time in such a way that it is designed around what you value as a family.
For us, we encouraged families to really consider this idea of picking one day a week and practicing Sabbath, both for the reasons of needing rest, for the reasons of experiencing the gospel and for the self-resisting the cultural... Because once you say, "This day is off limits. We're going to rest on this day. We're going to be together. We're going to craft our family culture around this 24 hour period," man, yeah, people will be shocked. They will assault the walls of that 24-hour period. And so you have to decide how important. It is really a practical way to try to decide, is this something I really want to do or not?
Eric Huffman: Because saying yes to that is saying no to everything else that might come up during that 24-hour period that might disrupt the rest. And you have to do that as father, your wife has to do it as a mother and your kids have to do it as well.
What is it that you and your family do like just practically? Give me a day, like starting when to when and what happens in those 24 hours just as briefly as you can
Jeremy Pryor: Sure. Well, we do a Friday night meal. When our kids were really little, it was really simple because we were exhausted and just trying to sustain this rhythm. As we've gotten older and our kids are older, and we've involved our parents, now we have probably 12 to 15 people that come over on Friday night. You know, mostly family, but sometimes extended family in the kingdom. They'll come over and we'll experience just a timeless moment where we light a candle, we say we're resting, we sing a song, we bless the sons, we bless the daughters.
My dad, he's the oldest member of the family. The oldest patriarch or matriarch will do the blessings. So that's usually either my parents or April's mom. And then we just have this great meal, then we rest together. We just we will play games, we'll study the Bible. Different seasons we'll do different things. We have pickleball court in the backyard, so we go play pickleball.
Eric Huffman: Wow.
Jeremy Pryor: We just enjoy it. You know, we build a fire. That's Friday night. And then what we do on Saturday is we try to think about—and this takes time to figure out—really how do you recharge? And I call this finding your off button. For most people they think that rest, their intuition is to rest you just stop working. And that's unfortunately not the way rest works. You have to discover what kind of activities actually restore you and recharge you.
This has always been a negotiation that we've had to work out with all of us. For me, I go to a coffee shop, I drink a cortado, I do a lot of journaling, and praying and reading for like two or three hours. Now, when my kids were little, it was very different. April would go to a coffee shop, I would stay home. I would try to keep the kids alive. They would get up... you know, this would be the one day a week, they might be able to watch something without us getting up or something. So there's kind of like a morning rhythm.
You want to create a morning rhythm. Then you want to create sort of an early afternoon rhythm of rest. So with little kids, for us that oftentimes look like going on an outing. And then during different seasons, then we come home, take a nap. And then we have sort of an early evening, and then a later evening rhythm. So we just look at these blocks. We're not trying to schedule anything. We're not trying to be productive. We're just trying to figure out what's a pattern that just recharges us.
And now I will tell you after we've practiced this for something like 15, 17 years, I am so recharged on my just typical Sabbath that I have an explosion of creative energy on Sunday. But that took a long time for me to not only discover how to do that, how to make sure that was happening for my whole family but also to do it consistently enough so that during the week I know that's coming And so I can go flat out during a week of work. So my productivity has gone way up but it took me some time. I had to learn how to totally recharged in order for that to actually benefit my work.
Eric Huffman: I love the practical wisdom of starting the night before. And I've always said that the great day begins the night before. That's what I tell my kids all the time. But living it out practically by starting with the meal the night before really gets you started for the next morning, and you wake up ready for the rest that you've got in store for you. It must be intentional. It's never easy, I guess. At least not when you start out. It sounds like you've got your heads around it now.
But in the world's model of family what happens I think is the kids are the clients and the parents are like customer service representatives or something. You're like working for them so that... You know, the customer's always right. So it's telling them no when they want to do something or be involved in something or when they want to play in another league or whatever it's almost unthinkable. What do you say to your kids when something comes up that might be a violation of your family identity and practice, especially in terms of Sabbath?
Jeremy Pryor: This is why the rhythm is so important to talk through. One way to avoid having to say no to your kids about everything else that's happening is for you to actually proactively do things with that time. For example, when our kids were little, we wanted our kids to be involved in sports. So we just started doing family sports. So we did Tennis for a whole season, we did three years of Taekwondo. There's a handful of sports, these magical sports, that actually everyone at various age groups can participate and actually have fun and be exercise. There's ways to do it. So we do that with our time. That's one thing that we had to do that really helped us.
Another thing is because we live into a really tight seven-day rhythm, and we repeat and we constantly are sort of refining that. We have an annual summit where we'd sit down with our kids, and we talk about like, "What is a Monday? What is it Tuesday? What is the Wednesday? Is it working for us?"
Our kids love our normal week. I love our normal week. It works for us because that took many, many iterations. So it's very difficult for our kids to want to, at this point, say no to things that we're doing. They had a very strong voice in the conversation as we were designing the rhythm. They can unfold their friends into our rhythmic activities. They know there are certain nights that are definitely open, they can go and hang out with their friends. We're not doing anything as a family at those times.
That's how we kind of approached it is to... Like Wednesday night we have a really good meal. We sit down, we watch a movie together. That's kind of our time for that. Saturday night is game time with Papa. My dad he was an only child. So he used to play all these board games by himself. He has this funny kind of nostalgia about board games. So all of his grandkids come over and he just plays board games with them on Saturday night while April and I go on our date night. You know, our kids love that.
And certainly if there's something going on that they want to participate in, that's something we want to consider. And we certainly say yes to a lot of those things. But if some activity wants to come and grab huge parts of our rhythm, our kids are more aware than anyone of the cost of that. If they're like, "I'm going to join a sport where there's four or five practices in a game every week, that's going to devastate our family life." All five of them have universally said, "Absolutely not." Like voluntarily, they would not want to watch th...
What's interesting too now that our kids are getting older and becoming adults, they're such close friends with each other because of all the time they spent together. And they're watching kind of what we all knew happen. And that is that when you prioritize all your peers and then they all scatter, and then...
You know, I don't hardly know anybody that I was friends with in high school. But man, I still know, my siblings. So they are experiencing the fruit of having spent all of that time investing in the family relationships and unfolding their friends and others into that vortex as opposed to us all going out and blowing up the family every week to all pursue individual things and really then to invest in relationships that probably aren't going to last.
Eric Huffman: Do you find a sort of city on the hill effect where other people's... Like, do your kids' friends want their families to be more like yours? I know that's a weird question. But you ever sense that from them, like there's a longing?
Jeremy Pryor: Yeah, for sure. When we first experienced that, I didn't know that was happening. We started doing the Sabbath dinner we were describing. And we were a part of a house church plant where we all kind of went off and did a retreat together. As an exercise in the retreat, we just asked everyone to share your top three milestones of your faith. Your whole spiritual journey, what are the top three?
We went around the whole room, and every single person in the room said one of the top three milestones of their entire spiritual journey was the first time they had Shabbat at our table. I was in total shock because we barely were surviving at that stage. We had little kids and we were trying to like, how do we..." But we really did experience a beautiful dinner as a family. And I think that, yeah, people see that. There's a part of their heart that just completely wakes up. And it does have an effect on your spiritual life.
Eric Huffman: Yeah, that's amazing. This still raises the question for me about how to help families pivot when they've been living under one set of definitions about family identity, etc, and all of a sudden, they have to start telling their kids no to things. They don't come with that culture built in from birth. Sounds like you and your wife have raised your family with those expectations. Do you have any... I know it's a hard one. Do you have any just brief word of advice for parents that want to change the game midstream?
Jeremy Pryor: I've definitely talked to a number of families that have done this. And typically the progression that they have described that has worked the best for them is the father first stands in front of his family and repents. This is tough.
Eric Huffman: Wow.
Jeremy Pryor: He's like, "Guys, I actually tried to build our family as a nest. I have been encouraging this hyper individualism in our family. I have led us in this way and I'm sorry. Look, I was ignorant and maybe selfish, but I didn't realize what I was doing to our family. And I'm so sorry. Would you forgive me? And would you give me a chance to lead this family in a different direction?" Kids, they'll like, "Whoa, what's..." That will move their heart. They love their dad.
And I would say that, then that the father, like any good coach, you get very close. You need to get connected to your children's hearts first. That's got to come first, I'm not going to sacrifice my connection to my child's heart on the altar of some great plan or vision of mine. But if I have their heart, I do think that I can win them over to a vision.
So start there. Repent. And then negotiate with your kids. If they're teenagers, I would certainly not bring in a regime, like some kind of tyrant. That's not gonna help your kids. So say, hey, "Okay, I know that you got all these sports or these things you got going or you got all your friends you love, but hey, is there certain things we can do? Let's look at our week. Is there a night that we can call our family night? And let's practice that as a family first, and then we'll start to involve more your friends. But can we protect this night?" You do it step at a time, a week at a time. This is why I find a week such a great tool.
And God tells us in Genesis and Exodus, that basically the seven days is there for us to learn how to order our lives. So you basically take back small bits of time at a time in your weekly rhythm in a deep, heartfelt connection conversation with your kids and see where that takes you.
Eric Huffman: That's awesome. I got to ask you about technology and your thoughts and advice about kids with technology and boundaries parents should set around these devices that we've all gotten so accustomed to carrying around. What's your policy at home and what's the best practice that as you see it?
Jeremy Pryor: Man, it is hard. I mean, so much of this question comes down to, how immersed is your child in a culture of technology with their peers? Because if you're not, if you're doing a lot of homeschooling, and you got a lot of like control the culture of your child, then you can stave off a lot of these things much, much more easily.
We did about 20% public school, 80% homeschool with our kids. So what we did is, you know, through middle basically our kids didn't have phones. They didn't go to public school. I think middle school, social media, it is so hard on kids, especially girls. I have four daughters. I mean, it is incredibly difficult.
But once our kids started to really more integrate with their peers, and they started to experience school in more that technology and they got a phone, what we did was we really approved one app at a time. And I think sometimes when we give kids the phone, we're just like, "Here's everything in the universe, and every kind of technology company coming at you all at once in their billions of dollars of research to figure out how to addict you. Good luck son, daughter."
We have to be realistic about how difficult this is. I can't resist half the things that are thrown at me. How can I expect my 16-year-old? So around 16, our kids would get a phone, the internet's off. There's certain things they can do. We talk about time, texting, kind of work that stuff out.
Then we would approve one app at a time. So they would come and make a case. Like, Hey, "Dad, I really want to download this app." I'll like go like, "All right, let's do a trial period, see how that works." And social media is always the most resistant thing we are to.
And usually we introduced our kids to social media via launching their own business. So most of our kids would get their first Instagram account, you know, 16, 17 years old as a business account. They wouldn't put their face on it. I want my kids to learn how social media works but I want them to like be a creator and a producer of content and not a consumer. So our kids were going down that creator route very deeply and not sort of socializing with their friends in intensive ways on their phone.
Eric Huffman: That's really good. I like the measured approach. And understanding that every kid or every situation is going to be different with this. It's not a one size fits all issue.
Well, Jeremy, I'm so grateful for the time you spent with us. How would anybody listening or watching right now find more of your work and get more engaged with what you and April are doing?
Jeremy Pryor: Familyteams.com is a great place to go. We've got my book, Family Revision. Jeff and Alyssa Bethke are our co-founders and co-owners of that ministry. So you can go and get Jeff's book, Take Back Your Family. It's so helpful. Jeff's book really kind of goes through the really historical things that happened that made this movement so pervasive in our culture.
In terms of what kind of tools you guys want, I mean, a lot of times it starts with going to family teams weekend. We do these weekends all over the place. We're gonna get to do one there in Houston soon at Story Church. I think it's a great place to come just to like...
It's really hard to have this conversation. It's just so foundational that it's hard to do this in the margin. So I just want people to take a weekend and really think about this. How do you build some of those first few tools? Get in a community of people, particularly if you're in a church that is starting to think about this, that's really helpful. Because this is hard. This is a hard transition. And then we're on all the social channels. We're constantly trying to find ways to equip folks through courses.
Probably the biggest question I get, as families start going down this rabbit hole is they start asking questions about work. Like, "Oh, my gosh, my work is taking up 50 hours a week, and it's getting harder. So what do we do there?" I coach a lot of families if they want to transition to start building assets through a thing called Family Inc. And a lot of it's just a practice, that teamness but also practicing in a very productive way. Like, let's build a side asset or a side hustle or a business. So those are a few things that we're doing to try to encourage families as they're making this transition.
Eric Huffman: I love it. I love it. And it's all under that umbrella of the mission that you've claimed as a family. I just think, obviously, you're gaining traction with your ministry and there's reasons for it. The hunger is there. The need is there. And I think people are going to be responding more and more.
So if you're watching or listening right now, I'm so thankful that y'all are here with us and that you've experienced Jeremy Pryor and his ministry. If you're in the Houston area, just keep your eyes and ears open for those family teams weekends that are coming up. Or at least one of them, maybe more, in the Houston area at Story Church. We'd love to have you.
So Jeremy, thank you so much for being with us today. I can't wait to see you here in Houston.
Jeremy Pryor: Thanks, Eric. My pleasure.
Announcer: For updates on a future family teams weekend at the Story Church, and for other events and resources from the Maybe God team, subscribe to our email newsletter on our website maybegodpod.com. Thanks for listening everyone.