Saturday, October 25, 2008

a day of rest?

At the risk of sounding like an apostate, I am going to share my thoughts with you on this Sunday morning. I have been a member of the church my whole life. I have a testimony of the church. A strong one. However lately, I have not felt very motivated to go to church. In an effort to explain why, I would like to take you with me on an average Sunday morning at the Turner home....

Before church:
"Time to get up guys!"
" I don't want to go! Church is soooo boring!"
"Can I bring just one lego?"
"I can't find my church shoes!"
"I'm not hungry for breakfast, I'll just eat a snack at church."
"Kids, if there is a coloring book that you would like to bring, you need to put it in the church bag right now!"
"Harm brush out your hair."
"Have you looked for your shoes under the bed? In the closet?"
"Mom is this good enough?" "No you still have a million knots in there."
"Can I just wear my crocs?"
"No find your church sandals!"
"Mom can I bring cheetos and oreos for a snack today?" "No, are you insane?"
"Harm brush out your hair! You missed the entire back!"
"Can I please just wear flip flops?" " Fine just put on whatever shoes you can find!"
"Forget it Harm, I am going to do it." "Ow Mom that hurts. You are so mean. When I am a Mom I am not going to brush my daughters hair that hard!""yes you will, that's exactly what I told my Mom when I was your age."

Out the door...
"I forgot my scripture bag!"
" I never ate breakfast! I am starrrrrrving!"
"It's no fair, how come I always have to sit in the back of the van?"
"How come we can't watch a movie on the way to church?" "Because we live 2 minutes away." "What if it is a church movie?" " Like what?" "Well Scooby Doo is kind of a church movie." "How?" " Well they try to help people." "No".
"Well can we at least listen to our cds and not church music?" "NO".
"Connor snuck legos!"

Arriving at church...
Ben, " Why are you guys late?"

In the chapel...
" I don't want to sit by him!"
" I didn't want this coloring book!"
"Is this all we have for a snack?"
"Only take one piece of bread! I said one!"
"Ivan you are not allowed to be under the bench!"
"I want Daddy!"
" He wants my markers and I don't want to share!"
"How come I never get the big sticker book?"
"No you may not go get a drink, I told you to do that before we came in." "But we were late so you said to hurry up!"
" Don't dump out the OK pick them up. Try not to...scrunch them into the carpet."
Ben-" we really need to start bringing a mini vacum." Glare
"I am bored!"
"This prayer takes toooo long."
"Is it time to go yet?"
"I want Daddy","Marie, I can't take him I have to go and count." Glare
"You just have to sit through the last song and than a prayer and than you can go to primary."
"Pick up all your stuff...never mind I will do it just go!"

During the last two hours...
I make sure Ivan is in nursery, do they need any help?
Go to primary. Does anyone need copies? Do we have enough teachers?
"Could you go check on nursery?"
"You guys need to be quiet, we are still at church."
I make sure my three are somewhat behaving and help to keep the other kids in primary be quiet also.
"have you done your visiting teaching yet?" "Uhm...well no but I have good reasons!"

On the way home...
"I had to sit in the back on the way here!"
" Guess what_____________ did in primary?"
" Our teacher gave us a treat, ha ha you didn't get one"
"Why can't I ride with Daddy?" "Because he isn't coming home yet. He has to do tithing."
" Church is so boring."
" I forgot my scriptures!"
"Sister________ said you looked tired today."

After church....
Take a tylenol, a diet coke and a 2 hour nap

Do you see why I am lacking in motivation to get up and go to church? It is not a day of rest. Trust me. I do not feel like I am getting any new oil in my lamp. I don't listen to lessons that were planned for people over the age of 6. I don't sing a lot of hymns ( although I do love primary music). I don't read scriptures or say prayers. I don't sit next to women my age and get to talk about what is going on. We are too busy telling kids to "shhhh". Am I the only one who feels this way? I can't possibly. But how do I get it back? I have been in primary/nursery for almost my whole married life. I love the women that I work with. I like being with the kids. I just wish for well some oil to be put back into my lamp...


Janice said...

Welcome to my current situation. I've had it for the past 3 and 1/2 years. I've found that you just need to find your oil somewhere else. Whether that be getting together with church ladies for a playgroup or scrapbook night, whatever you can think of. (I know you are super busy though with your children during the week) And, do your visiting teaching. It's the closest I get to RS these days. I never get the chance to keep up on the lessons in RS. (the way I see it, I only can get time to read/prepare ONE lesson in a week) I'm sorry, you got the Janice disease. My other suggestion: pray, pray, pray! When you are frustrated with a calling because you sense the need for something different (such as RS) you just need the Lord to pull you through it. Not sure if any of this helped you, but please know that I feel the same EVERY Sunday. To make it even better - I'm technically released from Primary now due to the ward split, but they haven't replaced me yet so I am still teaching! I really love the children I teach, I just know I need a change. I NEED RS!!!

Mary said...

You are superwoman for getting all the kids ready and out the door by yourself!

At this stage in life, I really feel like church is a three-hour-long wrestling match. An hour of wrestling my kids in our pew and two hours of wrestling with the entire primary, adults and kids alike. Sundays are definitely the least restful of days for me. I have no words of advice, but can maybe give you an air-punch of solidarity or something :)

Maybe what we need is to go to a nice, quiet, relaxing hour of kid-free Relief Society sometime!

heidigoseek said...

i've always said i need my jogging shoes, not my heels when i go to church:)
monday...that's my day of rest!

The Farr's said...

I totally hear you! It's been really hard to take the twins because we don't even get to listen to anything being said! And Austin HATES his current primary class. I just read a great book by James Ferrell. He wrote "The Peacegiver." (Which I totally recommend) Anyway, it's called "The Holy Secret." It has helped me find motivation for things that I find to be too much work! I agree with Janice to do your visiting teacher and to open up your home to your visiting teachers. I know how hard it can be with busy schedules, but it's a great way to connect with other women. Love ya!

Brooke said...

Hang in there, Marie! Sometimes I feel that way too. We went out of town for a month in the summer, and when we returned, someone commented, "Sacrament was sooo quiet when you were gone." Just remember that this stage of your life with all of its hard times and all of its intense joys is just a small part of your overall life. You'll get plenty of time to absorb ALL that church has to offer.

The Anglesey Family said...

Totally understand!

Momgunter said...

Just keep trucking Marie and all you other young mothers! The Lord is blessing your every effort! Before you know it, you'll be the grey-haired couple sitting behind young couples watching their kids antics and reminiscing about their own. They will bless you as they grow older

becky said...

Haha I had a similar conversation today. I have been in primary the last 6 of 7 years. And am now in the primary presidency. And I wonder why the Lord keeps putting me in there. I dont know if he thinks every nursery needs a grouchy pregnant lady that is willing to take every child to their father or if He thinks one day she will learn patients. And the funny thing is I love my calling. I guess it is the little moments otherwise I would be overwhelmed every week. I hope next sunday is better.

Avis La Fin said...

Mortality is a period of testing, a time to prove ourselves worthy to return to the presence of our Heavenly Father. In order to be tested, we must sometimes face challenges and difficulties. At times there appears to be no light at the tunnel’s end—no dawn to break the night’s darkness. We feel surrounded by the pain of broken hearts, the disappointment of shattered dreams, and the despair of vanished hopes. We join in uttering the biblical plea “Is there no balm in Gilead?” We are inclined to view our own personal misfortunes through the distorted prism of pessimism. We feel abandoned, heartbroken, alone. If you find yourself in such a situation, I plead with you to turn to our Heavenly Father in faith. He will lift you and guide you. He will not always take your afflictions from you, but He will comfort and lead you with love through whatever storm you face."
--Thomas S. Monson, "Looking Back and Moving Forward", Ensign, May 2008, 87–90

Marie, we just heard a talk in stake conference which covers this very topic!! The woman was the stake Relief Society President, and she was talking about her fear of inviting people to hear the Gospel and of doing missionary work. She said, "I realized that the Lord's work isn't about me." At this stage in your life, the Lord's work isn't about you!! The fact is, you will triumph. They'll learn to dress themselves, get what they ready for church, sit by themselves quietly, and, most of all, learn the habit of going to church and the establishment of a testimony. Believe it or not, someday you'll be bored at Church!! Love You, Mom

Susan said...

Heather thought this post was HILARIOUS. I don't think she realized how much she sounds like Harmony - she likes to say, "My life would be SO much easier if I didn't have hair!"

It will get better, especially when you're finally able to go to RS again. Hang in there!

Little Hensley Fam said...

We must be on the same ride and not even realize it! That's exactly how I feel most Sundays, although Josh doesn't ask why I'm late (he knows). We had Stake Conference yesterday and I was so glad I went to the Saturday night session because I didn't get much out of Sunday's session. (going to the bathroom several times, Jonas and Maddie telling me they're bored, the kids fighting over crayons,etc.)
I think Janice gave you some good advice. Now that I'm in Nursery and not seeing anyone over the age of 3 for 2 hours, I'm really feeling the need for some extra spiritual help to keep me motivated. Hang in there! I know you'll pull through!

April said...

I do recall those days. We no longer attend the Mormon church. Our current church takes out a couple of those hassles on every one wears there regular clothes its only about and hour Some of that is standing and singing but since it is short there is no need for a snack. The kids only stay for praise and worship (the singing) then they go to their class so I don't have to keep them busy and quite for an hour that was always hard. People expect these littles to be silent it just isn't going to happen it goes against everything they are. keep going though if you don't the next time you want to it will be way more work because they are out of the habit and the will be worse than before. It will pass quickly even though it doesn't seem like it and you will be back to doing the church the calm and quite way. Well until they are teenagers and want to voice their own reasons for not going to church with you on Sunday.