I vividly remember sitting in a church pew on Good Friday a few years back, tears rolling down my face, absorbing every syllable of a service that packed a punch.
This past Good Friday my 2 year old would not stop repeating at the top of his lungs, “It’s LOVE day” as influenced by a certain young tiger. My 3 year old began hysterically weeping when I would not let her give some of the drawings she had been working on to a girl sitting a few pews down. My baby was pretty good, but still happy-loud and squirmy. We had to leave after the 3rd of the 7 sayings from the cross. I hadn’t heard a single word up to that point. It would have been completely embarrassing if I weren’t so accustomed to just about the exact same situation a thousand times over.
Sometimes I resent the fact that I used to be able to choose which blocks of my leisure time I could dedicate to growing spiritually, with plenty of time to spare for other leisure, but now the choice usually comes down to attempted spiritual growth or even less broken, terrible sleep. The guilt trip hits full force when I hit the pillow with the exhausted prayer to help me better prioritize my time and work harder at incorporating my faith into every aspect of my life, carving out the time necessary to truly connect with my loving Savior. What an incredible and beautiful relief it is to already be purchased and won, redeemed and forgiven, to have a place secure in my heavenly home. I don’t have a Savior looking at my efforts to determine my worthiness. I have a Savior desperately in love with me, and eager for me to grow in my relationship with him. He is endlessly patient with other-worldly understanding.
Most of my spiritual growth these days consists of me teaching bible stories to young children, helping them grasp the meaning and application. I point out things Jesus made, and how he might want us to act in certain situations. I repeat simple Sunday School type questions to make sure the answers are second nature to the tiny growing faiths I’m tasked with nurturing. My reflections are usually centered around my children, for example my toddler’s incessant declarations of it being “Love Day” during the Good Friday service we attempted to attend. Good Friday IS Love Day isn’t it? Is there any truer example of Love than that sacrifice?? Spot on, dear son. My relationship with my Savior looks different than it did during other seasons of my life. It’s mostly because I’m usually in His presence with a bundle of wee ones who have a lot more growing to do in their understanding of who He is and what He has done than I do right now.
Someday I will be back in that place where I can more easily dig deep and alone into the inspired Word and it’s application in my life.
Right now I need to submit to my season, and treasure the sweet and simple lessons while growing a child-like and ever growing faith, my own.
He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me.