Church & Children
I cried in church today. I’m still processing it.
On the surface it was because going to church with a 3 year old and a 1 year old is hard. How do you manage expectations? Is everyone looking at you when your kids are screaming? How many people are irritated and rolling their eyes? Probably the same amount that couldn’t care less.
I cried in church today because I was triggered by the noises of children. It’s not the first time I’ve cried for that reason.
I vividly remember the season when children's noises in church triggered my tears because I wondered if I would ever have any of my own making those very noises. I wiped the tears from my face feeling like the entire church was watching me, knowing though, that they weren’t. I barely made it through several services in that season of life without completely losing it. Recalling it now, tears are filling my eyes and my heart aches for men and women who long for children of their own.
Today I felt like the entire church was watching me again, but for different reasons. Because my boys were making dinosaur noises during the readings. I was frustrated because my back hurt and because every time the boys seemed to be a little settled in either the sitting or standing position, it was time to do the opposite. Thanks Catholicism. My mind yearned to hear any sort of message from the readings or the prayers or the sermons today. I even whispered to Drew, jokingly asking him if we could hire a sitter for church next week.
I made it up to the front for communion then slid out the side door with Hollis, the Kansas wind slapping us in the face as we opened the door. We walked around back and waited for Drew and Sam after the closing song. My mother-in-law gave me a hug and I nearly lost it again.
Things are hard when you feel like you’re losing it and everyone is judging you. But are they really? Or is it you judging you? In both moments, I was comparing MY situation to others. Why do others have kids and we don’t? Why are MY boys the loudest in church? What am I doing wrong? What’s wrong with me?
There it is. That’s the root of it. Unworthiness. Not good enough.
This is how the ego, the devil, the whatever you wanna call it. This is how it gets to us. It’s when we forget the truth. The TRUTH of God. The TRUTH of the Universe! The TRUTH of love!
I am a child of God, made in his image. Be present. Slow down. Do your best. He presents us with lessons as long as we’re willing to learn. As I write this out and process, I wholeheartedly feel that THIS was the message God intended for me to learn today.
What season of life are you in? What lesson is God trying to teach you? Are you willing to learn?
I’m grateful I decided to process this in my cloffice (closet-office) while the boys play sharks in the bathtub.