Sunday, May 23, 2010
I remember 5 years ago at my old job I was having a conversation in the lunch room with a co-worker. She said to me, "You are so good to go to church every Sunday. The last time I attended was when I was a teenager and my grandma would make me go. It was soooo boring. I'm sorry but I would rather enjoy my Sundays than be bored." I remember thinking about her children and how they would never learn about the gospel, how to pray and that they have a Heavenly Father who loves them. They would never learn all the songs that teach them about the Savior and they would never understand the atonement or make baptismal covenants and receive so many blessings. I felt sad for her cute little family.
Years later, I was sitting in sacrament meeting listening to a stake leader speak. He said, "Sacrament meeting was never meant for your entertainment. You don't come to church to be entertained. You come to feel the spirit and renew covenants, you come to worship the Lord. If you are coming with the right intentions - you will feel the spirit and receive revelation. You will find answers you have been praying for, you will build a stronger relationship with the Lord and you will feel uplifted. If this is what you are seeking, you will receive it and you won't be bored, but filled with the burning of the spirit. If you are coming with other intentions or because you feel you have to, then yes, you will miss out on these blessings and you may feel bored."
How true. I thought to myself about all that the Lord has done for us and all he asks us to do is devote one day a week to him. Because I love the Lord and I am deeply grateful for all he has done for me it is not hard for me to show my love and respect in return. I feel in debt to him and this is how I show him that what he did for me was not in vein.
In fact, I really enjoy Sundays - especially church. It's the one day I get to rest and enjoy my family with no worries or stress. It's the one day I get to listen to the testimonies ad experiences of others and feel uplifted. I sometimes learn more in one hour than a weeks worth of scripture study. I walk away feeling a better person, a better mom and motivated to strive to be even better that week. It's a good feeling. I come home feeling a deeper love for my kids and husband. We feel peace in our home, security and safety. No other activities on this earth could offer what I receive when I attend church on Sunday and when I keep the Sabbath holy.
My kids love going to primary. They love singing songs about Jesus and learning about the simpleness of the gospel. It's so special to watch them learn and grow and they end up teaching me more than I could teach them. Primary gives them the foundation they will need to make the right choices as they enter school. My son already has a strong sense of what is right and wrong and his heroes are surprisingly not Superman, Batman, or Spiderman - instead they are the prophets in the scriptures, especially the Book of Mormon. He tries to be like Nephi and Ammon and choose the right. Instead of playing cars or ninjas he likes to play "church" and he blesses and passes the sacrament. He has a strong influence already on all his little friends.
My little daughter recognizes Jesus and the prophet when she sees their pictures and she loves to say her own prayers. She is only 22 months. It's special to see.
In order to love keeping the Sabbath day holy and enjoy attending church you need to first have an understanding of why this is important along with a desire to do it. By doing this you will experience blessings beyond belief which will make it easier to increase your desire to continue on this path. I actually feel sad when I miss church or spend a Sunday out of town. Yes, call me strange - but I notice an emptiness as my spirit misses out on an opportunity to grow and be uplifted. It's like my energy bar for the week and if I miss out on it, then my spiritual energy level is lower that week and I notice a big difference. When I am not in church on Sunday it feels awkward and I don't care what it is I am doing, it is no fun. My spirit knows where it is supposed to be.
I testify to you that being in the right places at the right times will always bless us. The Lord doesn't ask us to do this make our lives less exciting, he asks us to do this because he loves us and he knows our lives will become better and more enjoyable by keeping his commandments. It is the most unselfish thing you could do to show your love for the Lord. It is a sacrifice for many people and to sacrifice willingly is a godly attribute. I say this in the name of Jesus Christ amen.