Updated: Jan 17
The best place to build a firm foundation for my babies—in community. From the time Nnenna was an infant, this has been our church home. Sometimes they’re loud, rambunctious, wild, all of it. I remember when I first started coming with Nnenna.
For a while we were chronically late to morning service. I was still nursing, I didn’t really know anyone, and every peep she made echoed. Our pastor would find a way to mention us in his sermon as a way of reassuring me he welcomed our presence.
Eventually my spirit was stirred to show up on time. Three babies in, we aren’t always on time, but we remain faithful. We do what we have to do: overpack, allow our church family to help us, we get creative—whatever it takes to be here to meet Jesus.
I know they will each walk with God and a beautifully deep and rich story will unfold that is unlike anyone else’s. I know God didn’t promise easy. I know they will struggle. I know life will be full of peaks and valleys. I know I’ll feel helpless at times, and I won’t have most of the answers.
My hope is in the One who can get them through. Because of His great love, I’ll be able to love them no matter what. I hope I live a life that leads them to Him.
So I guess this is for anyone feeling discouraged about getting their family to church. Your babies are small, and you’re in the thick of it. You may be a single mom [been there], or your husband works on Sundays [done that], or you feel like the load is on you to get everyone out the door [yup], or your spouse isn’t ready to attend church.
The thought is overwhelming. I get it. Here’s what I know:
1. It won’t get any easier if you stop going altogether; there is grace, of course, but make God a priority, and make your dates with Him, in His house, a non-negotiable, just as you would a BFF [𝑯𝒆𝒃𝒓𝒆𝒘𝒔 10:25];
2. At the right church home for you, you will be a part of community ready to embrace you and your family in every stage of life;
3. You are giving your children a gift that has an eternal impact on their souls and on this world.
After all, they belong to Him anyway. We all do, so it’s part of your soul care too, Mama!
Shush Your Shame
Jennifer J. Jones