Ever since I can remember, Sunday mornings were not optional. Unless someone was ill or we were on vacation, going to church was mandatory. I grew up in a Lutheran church which was conveniently located a very short walk from our front door. One of the things I detested the most was dressing up. My mother thought it was a fantastic idea to buy me girly dresses and put pigtails in my hair. One Sunday after we got home, I took things into my own hands. I tore my dress off, walked over to the bathroom, and flushed my pigtail bands down the toilet.
There are a few memories that stick out in the 18 years I attended my childhood church. One, my time in the adult choir with my dad. Daddy taught me to sing to Jesus a LOUD and JOYFUL noise! He had an incredible bass voice and everyone loved hearing him “bring up the bottom.” Two, my youth group. We had many awesome and a few scary moments together. Awesome were our times together in the Pocono mountains. Scary were the sleepovers in the basement of the church on Halloween. Believe it or not, I watched the scariest movies of my life in a lower level Sunday school room in the church. Lastly, our “Maundy Thursday service.” It was a time where we observed Jesus’ final moments before being crucified. At the end of the service, the lights go out and you’re supposed to sit in silence for a few minutes and then leave. You could hear a pin drop. I will never forget the one year when the lights went out and within 15 seconds my grandpa sneezed. Grandpa didn’t say much in a normal situation. His love for his children and grandchildren was deep but more understood. The fact that he exploded with a sneeze at the most inappropriate moment struck me so funny. I tried with all my might to hide my amusement but I couldn’t. Our pew was vibrating. I felt like I was an overly inflated balloon ready to explode in laughter at any moment. I couldn’t wait to RUN out of the building that night.
Fast forward to today. We have raised our sons to regularly attend church on Sunday mornings. We have been extremely thankful for an outstanding church family and an environment where our kids felt loved. The boys are adults now and they make their choice where, when and if they go. Our view of Sunday mornings is changing. Now that our kids are grown, the sky is the limit. We have contemplated if every Sunday morning at 9:30am is where Jesus wants us. It’s hard to break a habit after 47 years. Fellowship with other believers is important but hearing and following His direction is even more crucial. Just another season of change. I believe the greatest ministry happens house to house. In other words, bloom where you’re planted. I believe Jesus went from place to place/ house to house all week long and then on His Sabbath morning was sitting by still waters, alone…connecting with God and hearing His voice. At times, I think Sundays become a lot more complicated then they need to be. I don’t even know exactly what I’m trying to say. I guess I’m just questioning, where would Jesus be today and what would He be doing on a Sunday morning…because that’s where I wanna be.
Thoughts I’m pondering today are…
- I’m thankful for parents who raised me well and made a commitment to Sunday morning services.
- I only want to be where Jesus wants me on a Sunday morning.
- Choose JOY everyday!