Sunday, September 26, 2010

The most important day of the week.

Conviction. Don't you love the way the Holy Spirit gently prompts conviction upon your heart? I do. I once her it described as a gentle dove that just flutters over your spirit giving you that hint of uneasiness that we all have felt. I think we often confuse it with what the world calls our "conscience." Anyhow, I felt that nudging late Saturday night when I picked up a book I have been meaning to start for some time now, A Woman After God's Own Heart by Elizabeth George. I skipped around a bit (I am not a big time reader, sad to admit). My eyes fell on the bolded quote on page 132 -- "Talk about church with eager anticipation all week long." I thought to myself, "Do I do that?" I often, often think about how I want Scarlett to view the world since most, if not all, of her introduction will be shaped by me. One of my most earnest prayers for her is that she will come to know Jesus, personally, at a young age and be a genuine follower of Him for her entire life. I am sure this is a prayer that many parents have. Just as soon as I started thinking about that, the focus was put back on me for a moment. If I am the one (as well as Mitch of course) who shapes her innocent perspective of the world, I have got to be intentional at all times. So, back to the quote. It was late (1:00 am +) Saturday night and my eyes fell upon these pages that could not have been more applicable to me. I will just share some of what I read instead of just rambling on here...

As important as it is to pray for our children -- for salvation and for Christian mates -- we must not stop with prayer. We must model a life dedicated to the Lord and train our children to follow His ways. Many times a woman starts off well -- she gets married, wants a baby, prays for a baby, has a baby, and goes through a ceremony at church where she dedicates the baby to God. But then something happens -- the baby becomes a reason for missing church....
Now this is not a lecture on rules about going to church, but I will say that attending worship faithfully instills an important habit in our children's lives and something into their hearts that nothing else can give them. Our decision to take our children to church communicates to them --from birth on-- the importance of worship and fellowship in a corporate body (Hebrews 10:25). And this decision reaps untold dividends. For starters, your children will never know an option for Sunday...
But getting there isn't easy. Believe me, I know! However, in most families the wife and mother (that's you and me!) is the key to getting the family to church on Sunday mornings. And what can you and I do to get our family off to church with more pleasure and less hassle? First of all, talk about church with eager anticipation all week long. Let your children see you looking forward to church. (Elizabeth goes on to talk about practical things like preparing clothes, etc. ahead of time...)

I don't know what this text stirs up for you. Maybe I am totally alone in this, but sometimes I do act like Scarlett gives me an excuse to stay home from church. I think, "Oh, she needs to stay at home other wise she will miss her morning nap...or I can't feed her comfortably at church..." Well, this passage really put all that out the window for me. Yes, Scarlett is my precious responsibility and I am to provide her with the most immaculate care possible, but that does not change the fact that I am to be an obedient child of God. Putting aside my worries such as "schedules" and such gives me the freedom to go and worship God corporately on Sunday-- the most important day of the week. Even if it means Scarlett and I sit in the cry room the entire time, we are there and pledging our devotion to a gracious God that we love. What other thing would I rather model for Scarlett? Nothing comes to mind.

I don't know everyone that reads this blog. I have no idea where some of you may be coming from. I don't want to come off as "thumping my Bible" or sounding legalistic (like, you MUST go to church!). But, I do want whoever's eyes that fall upon our life (and this blog because I started it simply as a "log" of our life happenings) to know the love of God. He is CRAZY about you. And I mean in the way Mitch and I are CRAZY about Scarlett. He thinks about you all the time (Psalm 139 tells us that His thoughts about us are like the grains of sand on the earth. wow.) So, wherever you may be today...whatever season of life you are in, whatever level of "relationship" you currently have with the Lord, just know HE love YOU.
I totally just meant to put up this post sharing what the Lord showed me through a couple pages of a book, but I really feel like I just need to be clear with whoever is reading this: God desires a personal relationship with you. For many, that will start by just setting Sunday aside as the most important day of the week and attending a church that teaches the Bible -- God's very true and applicable word.

And here is our little cutie waking up from her Sunday afternoon nap (which was rather long since she missed her morning nap at church!)

I hope you have a great week. It feels like fall is finally here, yippee!

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