Sunday Morning Begins Saturday Night

Oh come, let us sing to the Lord;
    let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation!
Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving;
    let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!
~ Psalm 95:1-2

Sometimes, Sunday morning does not always look (or feel) so joyful. Inevitably milk is spilled across the breakfast table, someone can’t find their shoes, and if there’s a baby, she will almost certainly need to change outfits at least twice before being loaded into the car.

It is hard to transition the mind and heart from the frantic hustle of herding small children to a gentle greeting and a heart ready to worship. And yet, we stubbornly greet the little lady at the door of the church building through gritted teeth, often with more consideration than we have spoken to our children, because we are determined to “do it all.”

I don’t think anyone of us wants this kind of chaos or striving on the way to worship. We yearn to go to worship God with the spirit of anticipation and joy the Psalmist proclaims, yet sometimes, we lose touch with it. Of course, some things do improve simply as our children grow older (and also as we grow more mature!), but we are not helpless to the waves of chaos now. We forget a simple truth: a more peaceful Sunday morning must begin Saturday night. May I humbly offer some suggestions?

*Go to bed (yes, even the adults) on time. Everyone makes better choices when well rested.

*Lay out everything that you can – any quiet bags, Bibles, outfits, shoes, contribution, class supplies, etc the night before. Prevention is the best cure.

*Do eat breakfast. Do not make it complicated. This is not the time to showcase your culinary skills. This is a good time to ensure that there are no grumpy people (including mom) due to a very easy fix: food!

*Stop multitasking. Make getting to worship the sole task of Sunday morning. Any other project, chore, or activity can wait till you get home.

*Recognize the pace of your children (and perhaps yourself). Anyone who has ever tried to hurry a delightful, independent and precocious toddler knows that it simply takes time. Factor in that time so that you can calmly wait for her to buckle her shoes (“I do it myself”) and for him to button his shirt (“I finally did it, mom!”). We each need that white space to slow down and breathe.

*Set the tone with worship music. This will help direct all our minds to the end goal: worshipping God. He is the one we are yearning to connect with – and the One who holds out his arms to us and to our beautiful, precious (and sometimes sticky) children.

For he is our God,
    and we are the people of his pasture,
    and the sheep of his hand
. ~ Psalm 95:7

Photo by Sincerely Media on Unsplash

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