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Sunday Struggles

This morning was one of those Sunday mornings when I just didn’t want to go to church.  I woke up feeling apathetic and self-indulgent.  I didn’t feel like putting on a smile and greeting everyone and making small talk.  And I really didn’t feel like sitting still for a 40-minute sermon, trying to keep my mind focused on the topic at hand.  It didn’t help that my head was cloudy and my body sluggish, thanks to the Chloretrimeton I had taken earlier for seasonal allergies. 

I went to church out of sheer obedience and because that’s what we do.  But my heart wasn’t in it.  My body wasn’t in it.  I wasn’t in it.

When we arrived, I wearily hoisted myself out of the car, plastered a fake smile on my face, and slowly strolled into the building, prolonging every last minute in the glorious September sunshine.  We found our seats, and I struggled to not be annoyed with my kids’ childish squirming as they settled themselves.

I wrestled with my attitude through the morning announcements and the prelude, trying to hide from my friends and fellow worshipers my reluctance to be there. 

But then something unexpected happened.  When we stood to sing, the words and music of the familiar hymn acted as a tonic for my soul.

Some of the words were:

Crown him with many crowns,
the Lamb upon his throne,
Hark! how the heavenly anthem drowns
all music but its own.
Awake, my soul, and sing
of him who died for thee,
and hail him as thy matchless King
through all eternity.

And:


All hail, Redeemer, hail!
For thou hast died for me;
thy praise and glory shall not fail
throughout eternity.

Then the next hymn held these gems of encouragement:

Finish, then, Thy new creation;
Pure and spotless let us be.
Let us see Thy great salvation
Perfectly restored in Thee;
Changed from glory into glory,
Till in heaven we take our place,
Till we cast our crowns before Thee,
Lost in wonder, love, and praise.

How could I possibly continue in the muck and mire of apathy while singing those words?

By the sermon, my inner Oscar the Grouch had been replaced by praise for the Creator.  My restless legs had even found peace.  I was able to focus on the message, and my heart was open to the lessons I needed to learn.

When we finally stood to sing the final hymn, I was able to joyfully sing the words with all my heart.

Laud and honor to the Father,
laud and honor to the Son,
laud and honor to the Spirit,
ever three and ever one;
one in might and one in glory,
while unending ages run.

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23 thoughts on “Sunday Struggles

  1. We had one of those Sundays today…it was the Sunday where I decided to make a complaint to the hubby because he wanted to wear his overalls to church…GIVE ME A BREAK…so of course, I had to open my big mouth because God expects perfection in what you are wearing, NOT! Anyway…we were already a bit grumpy and we all got to “OUR” seats and sang beautiful worship songs and then one of our church supported missionaries spoke…God spoke through him…it was amazing. Amazing might not even come close to what it was…Hubby and I left different than we walked in. Not just temporarily changed but I believe changed for life…I hear ya sista!! I hear ya!! And I love Him…BOY DO I LOVE HIM!

  2. Isn’t it amazing how God works. Those times when I have allowed myself to be flesh indulgent and stay home I have always missed something great. But when I’ve made myself go even when my flesh did not feel like it, God has always ministered to me in some way.

  3. My husband is currently on night shift and somehow I managed to drag myself, the two week old, toddler, and preschooler to church without inflicting permanent damage on any of them, tempting as it may have been. The sermon was powerful, given by our worship minister and gave me a chance to see a side of her not shown when she’s leading praise. I needed to be there. It’s funny how that works.

  4. I’ve had many Sundays like that and they never seem to turn out any other way than you’ve described. And the Sundays I’ve woken ready and rarin’ to go and then couldn’t because of weather or a sick Bean or whatever, it’s turned out fine that I WASN’T there.

  5. I know I’ve struggled with those feelings from time to time. It’s amazing how they usually fade away by the end of worship service–thank goodness! Whether it’s the message, the songs, a snippet from a prayer or chatting with a brother or sister afterwards–I find myself over My Mood.

  6. Awesome! Sunday mornings are always a challenge for me and getting my heart in the right place can be hard…this Sunday I was thrilled when our worship team played “Great is Thy Faithfulness” – It’s my fave and I hadn’t sang it in so long..it was just what I needed to get myself straightened out!

  7. Awesome! Sunday mornings are always a challenge for me and getting my heart in the right place can be hard…this Sunday I was thrilled when our worship team played “Great is Thy Faithfulness” – It’s my fave and I hadn’t sang it in so long..it was just what I needed to get myself straightened out!

  8. Awesome! Sunday mornings are always a challenge for me and getting my heart in the right place can be hard…this Sunday I was thrilled when our worship team played “Great is Thy Faithfulness” – It’s my fave and I hadn’t sang it in so long..it was just what I needed to get myself straightened out!

  9. Awesome! Sunday mornings are always a challenge for me and getting my heart in the right place can be hard…this Sunday I was thrilled when our worship team played “Great is Thy Faithfulness” – It’s my fave and I hadn’t sang it in so long..it was just what I needed to get myself straightened out!

  10. Awesome! Sunday mornings are always a challenge for me and getting my heart in the right place can be hard…this Sunday I was thrilled when our worship team played “Great is Thy Faithfulness” – It’s my fave and I hadn’t sang it in so long..it was just what I needed to get myself straightened out!

  11. Awesome! Sunday mornings are always a challenge for me and getting my heart in the right place can be hard…this Sunday I was thrilled when our worship team played “Great is Thy Faithfulness” – It’s my fave and I hadn’t sang it in so long..it was just what I needed to get myself straightened out!

  12. Awesome! Sunday mornings are always a challenge for me and getting my heart in the right place can be hard…this Sunday I was thrilled when our worship team played “Great is Thy Faithfulness” – It’s my fave and I hadn’t sang it in so long..it was just what I needed to get myself straightened out!

  13. Awesome! Sunday mornings are always a challenge for me and getting my heart in the right place can be hard…this Sunday I was thrilled when our worship team played “Great is Thy Faithfulness” – It’s my fave and I hadn’t sang it in so long..it was just what I needed to get myself straightened out!

  14. Awesome! Sunday mornings are always a challenge for me and getting my heart in the right place can be hard…this Sunday I was thrilled when our worship team played “Great is Thy Faithfulness” – It’s my fave and I hadn’t sang it in so long..it was just what I needed to get myself straightened out!

  15. Awesome! Sunday mornings are always a challenge for me and getting my heart in the right place can be hard…this Sunday I was thrilled when our worship team played “Great is Thy Faithfulness” – It’s my fave and I hadn’t sang it in so long..it was just what I needed to get myself straightened out!

  16. Isn’t that the way it goes – the day you so want to stay home – is the day you are so incredibly blessed when you finally do drag yourself in. I’ve been there many times!! 🙂 thanks for sharing!

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