“The Perfect Sunday Morning”Categories: Christian Living, Encouragement, Family, Joshuah Ellis
I think we have all had that Sunday morning. You sleep through your alarm; your clothes aren’t ironed, the kids are hungry, but all you have for breakfast is some protein powder and a head of lettuce. Then, right as you’re walking out the door, you realize that you haven’t turned off the coffee pot. You get in the car and remember that your Bible is on the kitchen table, but you’re already so late that you have to just leave it. Forget about Bible class. Now you’re driving like a maniac just to make it in time for worship. You get to the building halfway through the first song and while you are scrambling to get seated, the kids start asking for gum. Finally you get sat down, but by this time the Lord’s Supper has begun. You desperately inhale the bread and juice because you forgot to eat breakfast. The offering basket arrives just as you finish signing your check. Then, the song leader gets up again, but you have no idea what song is being lead because you have to distribute pens and paper to the kids if you want them to remain calm. Finally, the preacher stands up to speak, but you are so exhausted from the full days worth of activities you’ve managed to cram in the last 90 minutes, you can’t even begin to focus. Finally, he’s done. All you have to do is survive the closing prayer (please don’t be a long one) and you’re free to recuperate and try again this evening.
This has happened more times to my family than I care to admit. It is not something that I boast by any means, but it has happened. When we adopted our middle son right after our youngest was born, my wife and I were a wreck. We went from 1 kid to 3 over the course of 10 days and worship is what suffered the most. Finally, we sat down and made a plan to make sure that this didn’t happen anymore. Granted, we have had the occasional off week here and there, but the following tips have helped tremendously.
1. Saturday Night = School Night. The first thing we do, to set our kids and ourselves up to succeed, is treat Saturday night like a school night. We don’t make big plans or stay up too late on Saturday. Why? Because, Sunday is a workday. It is the Lord’s Day. We wouldn’t let our kids go to school on 6 hours of sleep and expect them to function and we certainly wouldn’t do that with our jobs. We try and get to bed at a decent hour so when Sunday morning rolls around, we are ready to go. Side note: This is also the perfect time to write your contribution check.
2. Wardrobe is a Saturday Night Venture. This is simple, and you know it makes sense. Saturday night, everyone’s clothes are picked out and ironed if needed. This means everything. How many times have you wasted time on Sunday morning looking for that one shoe, tie, earing, belt? Get it ALL together on Saturday. You’ll be glad you did.
3. On Time = Late. You know as well as I do that when you arrive at the building, there will be hands to shake and things to sort out. This is true regardless of when you arrive. Get there early enough to do all of that before class starts. This way, when it is time to begin, you can be in your seat ready to engage. Remember why you are there to begin with. This is God’s time. Be respectful of that. Again, do you show up in the parking lot of your workplace or kid’s school when the day is supposed to begin? No. You arrive a bit early so you can be prepared to begin on time.
4. Preparation is Key. Come to the building ready to go. Have your Bible lesson read. Make sure the kids have done theirs as well. Spend some time in prayer before you get there. If you want, you can listen to your Bible lesson and/or pray in the car. I don’t advise the driver to close his/her eyes during this prayer, but it can be done. This is a perfect time to get your mind right, even if you are running a bit late.
5. When You’re Here, You’re Here. Be present. Once you arrive at the building, there is nothing you can do about what happened this morning. In the immortal words of Elsa, “Let it go!” Resolve, to focus on God, and only on God. Everything else (lunch, bills, homework, ball games, personal issues, money, the coming week) can wait.
There is no such thing as a perfect Sunday morning, but these are some tips that should be able to help make the most of the time we set aside to collectively worship our God. If there is something that I did not mention that is a vital part of you’re Sunday morning routine. Share it in the comments below.