Sunday mornings are always stressful in our house. Here’s what needs to get done before we can head out the door for church:
- Our son needs breakfast
- We need breakfast
- The puppies need to be let out and cleaned up after
- The garden needs to be watered before the heat wave hits
- The chickens need to be let into the run
- The dog, puppies, cat and chickens all need to be fed and watered
- We need to get showered and dressed
- The check for church needs to be written out
- Our son’s diaper bag needs to be filled with diapers & tricks-snacks, books, and a drink
It’s no wonder that a lot of our fights are on the way to church. Last week, we had one of our worst weeks so far. Our son was as squirmy as ever and LOUD. I spent a lot of the service in the back of the church and sometimes even back in the hallway. I just could NOT keep him quiet. Afterwards, my husband and I even had a discussion about him being too young to sit through the service. We talked, again, about where in church we should sit. Perhaps it would be better to sit up front with less distractions? But, then will he be even more of a distraction to others?
This week was different. We made it through the majority of the service, all the way up through communion, without any major outbursts. It was awesome. I actually was able to pay attention to the sermon, enjoy one of my favorite hymns, and be present 90% of the time.
I wish I could tell you exactly what WE did that made the difference. Now, here’s the thing that gets me…I can’t think of one thing that we did different this week. The only thing that might have been different is our level or hurriedness. We woke up a little later than normal, so we were a bit more rushed. I can’t imagine that helped our situation.
Last week did something for me…it made me appreciate this week so much more. Last week, I was wondering where I failed as a mom. This week, I was so proud of our son and how well he sat through the service. This week reminded me that the only thing that will teach him to behave in church is practice. I know there will be more stressful Sundays. I know this week may have been an exception to the rule, but I’ll take it.
We aren’t just teaching our son how to sit through church.
Sure, that’s a big part of it, but we are teaching him so much more. We are forming the foundation of his faith. We are showing him that attending church and taking weekly communion is important. We are teaching him respect. We are showing him patience. We are being an example to him.
It’s not perfect. Heck, most of the time it’s not pretty. The thing is, it’s all worth it.
Maybe next Saturday we’ll get a thing or two checked off our list on Saturday evening…but that’s doubtful.