Sunday, March 29, 2009

Sunday Mornings


I don't know about you, but I think it's really hard to take a two-year-old to church. (Well, an almost-two-year-old.) He yells for the sake of yelling, runs through the pews, won't sit on my lap or near me, comments (loudly) on everything he sees...sigh.

So there I am, near the front of the church, in the almost-same pew I've sat in for the past eight years. Sure, I could move towards the back, or outside the sanctuary. But I am, to a fault, a creature of habit. I like that pew. The same familiar faces surround me (see, they're creatures of habit too), and there I am comfortable. Except for my extremely loud two-year-old.

So, after Matty went to Sunday School and it was clear that Jack wasn't going to be quiet (how is it possible for him to yell with my hand over his mouth?!), we took to the benches just outside the santcuary. Which, in retrospect, would have been a good place to start too, were I not forced to the front by habit. And love of that pew. Outside of yelling at another two-year-old when she tried to touch his book (gasp!), he did fine there. Because he could talk and carry on. And I could still hear the sermon. Pastor Hal said during his sermon (and I'm paraphrasing), "I'm not sure what brought you to church this morning, but I hope, at least in part, it was to see Jesus." Yes, please.

During the last song, we went to collect our things. During that - what? three minutes - Jack managed to spill his goldfish, yell at me for taking them away, chase me around the pew, throw this books on the floor and leave the church...without me. Super de duper. I gathered up our stuff and followed him out with a quiet, "I guess he's done," to the friends behind me.

And then I saw Jesus. Because Pastor Tedd was watiting at the back of the church with this (and again I paraphrase):

Hi, Jack. I'm glad you were here. I'm glad you brought him, Leanne, and I'm glad you sat at the front of the church. It's important for him to be here.

And me, having broken a sweat, smiled and sighed. He's right indeed. Thank you, Pastor.

(And yes, Katie, the nursery probably makes more sense...'cause you are likely to suggest it. :))

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

Well, it makes my Sunday School experience seem like the "norm". My Cullen is 2 1/2 and he came to Sunday School with me. During the song after Sunday School he ran up on the alter and when I told him to come back he wouldn't. So I had to chase him around and then carry him down in front of the whole Sunday school with him screaming and hitting me with his paper. You bro in law mark.. thought this was simply hilarious.. So I was the life of the party this morning too. :) Laura L.. But hey at least he was in church and Sunday School.

Leanne said...

Thanks, Laura. That makes me feel SO much better! I can't remember when Matty got better...around 3??

Grandma Sherry said...

Now I don't feel so bad after my experience with Jack and Matty in church last Sunday. It was memorable to say the least. :) They both layed down in the middle of the isle in church. Jack said hi to the gentleman in front us about 15 times until Dan tried to stop him. I finally told Dan to take them both out. (He was on the end). Church was almost over at that point. Then we had a pancake breakfast and Jack spilled his juice in his plate. They gave him a new one. Thanks!

Sherry

Anonymous said...

I have days when I go to church when I wonder why I even try. The kids holler and kick and crawl under the pews and I am about ready to crawl out myself. It always seems like those days are the ones when someone will come up and say that it is so nice to see and hear kids at church. Ethan is starting to get a little better now and he is almost three. Although Lydia has days and she is already 6. My sisters and I were just talking about this and wondering what do you do. One of my sisters said "Didn't mom just have to give us a half a stick of gum and we would be perfect angels?" I doubt mom would remember it that way:)
Amy "Haapala"

Megan Lorraine said...

We were in Bible Class the other night and had quite a similar experience. I'd tried to go by myself a week or two before, and decided it just was NOT fun with two rambunctious kids. I guess that we have to remember the real reason we go to church!

MindiJo said...

Little rascal. Kids will be kids, no matter where they are. We just notice it when we are around people who WE think are being critical of us. Chances are, they are not.

Laura Jean said...

I thoroughly enjoy your children during both wedding and funeral ceremonies. :D

Julie said...

I don't know if kids are more programmed to act up in public or if we just notice it more! That was an awesome comment that your Pastor made... :)

And Mindi- very true!

Chrissy said...

Why don't you just give them calculaters? works for Jodi.

andy said...

Leanne, you're doing a great thing. I'm convinced that church is where children learn what is and is not appropriate to do in public. Not just church...all of the public realm. My parents kept us up front and would rarely remove us as that might seem like a "reward" for bad behavior. Granted, I don't think they took us back to church until 2-3 years old...and I misbehaved like a heathen...but I learned some valuable lessons. I can recall my mother counseling me about standing and sitting, being quiet, singing nicely, and that no, young ladies do not brush their hair in the church pew. All very valuable lessons. Keep up the good work!

~ Junkyard Jennifer said...

Those little ones give us a run-for-our-money sometimes don't they? And it always seems to be in church (where it's supposed to be nice and quiet) that they do their best work. Haha!

Elizabeth said...

yes, I remember being an angel. and we didn't get anything - no treats, nothing to write with .. I should ask my mom .. how we really were. ;)