Monday, October 20, 2014

Making the Effort

Do you struggle with getting to church on time? Or even just getting out the door at the time you want? Do you struggle with being prepared? Having Sunday morning go smoothly?

I do.

Some weeks it goes so smoothly. We all have good attitudes. The van is loaded by a good time. No one is missing anything. The kids are all buckled in the van several minutes before its time to leave, allowing me to finish gathering up the last few items, turning off lights, doing a quick clean up of the kitchen getting those last couple of food items in the fridge that were missed. Its just awesome.

And then there are those other Sunday's. The ones I try to block from my memory. The ones that happen too often. The ones that make me glad no one is around to see. There is chaos. Everyone (read, me) has a bad attitude. There is complaining. A missing shoe. The van doesn't get loaded until the time we are supposed to be pulling out the driveway.

But there are also those other Sunday's that....honestly....I'd rather just stay home. *hangs head in shame* Yes. I feel that way. This past Sunday was one of those Sunday's.

Saturday's, from about 4pm till late, is spent getting ready for Sunday. Laying out clothes, finding shoes, preparing food, packing the diaper bag, getting everyone bathed, doing a little extra cleaning so the house is in good shape.....but this last Saturday it didn't happen. I'm about 9 weeks along with our sweet Blessing #6 and I felt sooo sick. It was terrible. I just wanted to lay in bed. Maybe have a pity party for a while. And sleep. I wanted sleep so bad. I laid out clothes, started packing extra clothes, made my list....and that was about as far as I got.

We live about 30 minutes from church, so we stay there all day. Which means we take our pillows, blankets to make beds on the nursery floor, our lunch, snacks, extra clothes, and other junk, I mean stuff! I told my husband that I just needed to go to bed, that hopefully I would sleep good and be able to finish up in the morning. Otherwise he could leave at 9am by himself and we would follow as soon as we could. I could tell he wasn't happy about that, but he also knew how sick I was feeling. I started getting for bed and realized I was being selfish. That I was kinda hoping I would end up just needing to stay home. I needed to change my heart attitude and make the decision that I was going to be ready on time. No if's, and's, or but's about it.

And I did it! I was up at 7:15, grabbed a quick shower and by 7:40 was dressed and mostly ready for the day. I made the kids their usual Sunday Morning Breakfast - scrambled eggs. Its quick, fast, easy clean up, and full of protein to help them make it through the morning. While they were eating, I started collecting pillows, blankets, food and such. After they were done, I sent the older kids to dress while I dressed the younger ones and got them ready to walk out the door. At 8:30ish, I was loading the van up. At 8:45 I (almost) always start assigning small chores - put these clothes in the dirty basket, put those books away, feed and water the dog and put him up, straighten that chair.....just little things to make the house look neater when we come up.....plus! it keep the kids busy and out of trouble. :)

We were pulling out of the driveway at our usual 9:03. I have no idea. That just always ends up being the time we actually leave. Weird, I know. :)

When I make the effort to have a good attitude, the LORD blesses me. When I make the effort to be prepared for the LORD's Day, I always leave feeling grateful and blessed. When I make the effort to be pleasant, the kids enjoy church more and are generally more well behaved (not always though).

I'd encourage you to really look at your Sunday mornings. Do you need to do more work Saturday to be more prepared and have the morning to be more smooth? Ask your husband how he feels Sunday mornings go. Does he want to see something different happen? Have a short time of Family Worship to prepare for Worshipping at church? Make a list of things that you/he want to see happen or be different about Sunday mornings, then brainstorm how to make that happen.

The LORD will bless you for making the effort to be ready to worship Him.

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