When Your Kids Don’t Like Church

For me, God comes first. When I start my day, I start it right off in prayer and Bible reading. The choices and decisions I make I really try to base them off of the Word of God. The way I dress, the words I speak, the friends I keep, the things that I allow into my life are filtered through what God would think. Now I am far from a saint by any means, but I try to live a life worthy of the forgiveness given to me by my savior. This post is written in the mindset that you as a parent feel the same. If you have problems with your church, the church in general, and/or your own commitment to the house of God then there is another post, not yet written at least by me, for that.

This includes my church life. If the doors of our church are open for service I am there. There are very few things that keep me from church. Hebrews 10:25 admonishes us “not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.” (NKJV) To take me to every service (and we have A LOT) is one thing. That is the easy part. To take your kids is another. For the most part, our oldest two came along without much complaint. Honestly, that is all they know. We have been taking them since their births. Sometimes, however, they just played the part of a church kid and other times they rebelled and fought us.

We made them go. We made them sit quiet and still in service when there was no children’s church. While our kids were “drug” to church they knew that God came first. Sports, special school events, birthday parties, and the like took a back seat. We also explained to them why Mom and Dad went to church, why we raise our hands in worship, why we pray, etc. Both are now adults and are living for God. They have a relationship with God that stands even without Mom and Dad pushing them.

Our younger kids had no real knowledge of God other than the very basic of basics which most Americans know. I have to tell you when we brought them home it was a REAL struggle to even get to church. A bigger struggle to get them to sit through a service. The youngest in nursery at the time, the oldest seriously would sit next to me and repeat over and over in my ear, yet loud enough for those around us to hear, “When is it over?”, “I hate this.”, etc., all in one of those deep whiney type voices. This went on for weeks…felt like months. The other two were pretty much the same as the oldest. One so wiggly it was such a distraction. If one still had his way he’d turn and stare at anyone and everyone the entire time.

We’d sit in the back as to try to be a distraction to as few fellow church members as possible. We came service after service knowing that we wouldn’t hear much if any of the sermons due to the kids’ distractive and disruptive behaviors. Talking before or after service with our friends were out of the question as keeping the kids wrangled up and from running out the door took up all of our time. Even a year after getting the kids I remember when one of my closest friends sat down in the seat in front of me to chat, one of the kids deliberately stood in between her and me. This happened more than you’d think.

We still dragged them to church. Made them wear church-appropriate attire. (Still a struggle sometimes.) We pushed it through. The first time I tried to bring the kids into the prayer room so I could pray before service, none of them were having it. Our youngest literally threw such a fit I had to leave the room within a couple of minutes. I kept pushing through.

Church, God was what these kids needed most. I had to push it through. Today, 2 1/2 years down the road all can sit in the prayer room with few problems. Our daughter has recently taken to reading her Bible during prayer time. (This is HUGE!) The younger two still have trouble sitting still through the service. We divide and conquer. One wiggly child sits on one side of mom and the other wiggly child on the other. Much of this past year the youngest has spent more time on my lap than in his chair. When Dad comes we sit in between the wigglers. We continue to push it through. They will come around to sitting quietly through service. The oldest of the four looks like he doesn’t want to be there yet he takes it all in. He has such a strong moral compass. He is also getting close to surrendering his life to Jesus!!

When your kids don’t want to go to church, push it through. Keep going to the church you know God planted you. Keep dragging them to each service. Don’t compromise. The world is full of compromisers and our kids need to see Jesus is worth sacrificing for. They need to know why you go to church, why you believe what you believe. Don’t let them dictate where or when you go to church. Let God come first. He will get ahold of your kid’s heart and spirits.

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Fair and Rodeo

IMG_2451Every year we try to make it to our local fair and rodeo. We don’t really ride the rides or eat too much fair food. Besides being too much money, sometimes meeting Smokey the Bear is just way cooler!IMG_2452

IMG_2454So is winning prizes from the free games.

IMG_2461Of course our favorite cowgirl and her hubby joined us.

I was also able to catch up to an former coworker, which was very nice.

Solar Eclipse

I apologize for the lateness of this post. I am playing catch up here.

So the 2017 solar eclipse, have you heard of it? Did you see it?

Me? I am one of those people who get excited about these type of once in a (fill in the blank) events. Especially, natural. As a family, we talked about it, but no one seemed to really care. So, when I heard our local space museum (our area is big on astronomy…I know the Mr. Hale of the famous Halebop.) was hosting an event I wanted to go. Going by myself was something new for me. I invited our older kids. One had college and the other couldn’t make it. Our younger kids all had school events planned around the solar eclipse.

Let me tell you, I learned something new about myself that day (that week before). I am so used to having someone with me for this kind of things that I almost didn’t go. I wasn’t afraid or anything just felt like a fish out of water. I pushed down whatever uncomfortable feelings I had and went. Boy, am I glad I did!

IMG_2471Besides being the type who gets excited by big natural occurrences, I can procrastinate as well. Especially when I hear that they will teach us to make viewing devices at the space museum.

The event started on the first floor. It was packed. Warm, sweaty bodies kept filling in. Confused and looking for the direction they came. Some who planned and came early sat in the front able to hear the solar eclipse talk.  I scoped the place out an ended up leaning on a wall looking out over the city.

There was mention of eclipse glasses being handed out the first-come-first-serve style on the ground floor at the such and such time and feeling the need for freash air I went down. Glad I did because I was able to make this cool eclipse mirror.

IMG_2472Here you can see a collection of reflections from the mirrors. It was fun to people watch, yet weird not to have anyone to talk to, to share it with.

However, maybe being alone helped me take more in, be able to pay attention to the details surrounding me. What cooler place to be than the space museum where much our states, countries space endeavors happened, had a part in, here. While taking it all in I spotted museum staff with a box. A box just the right size to hold eclipse glasses. I felt like a secret agent making my way to the truck where they handed them out. Again, so glad I went and so glad I spotted the staff. To be able to view a work of God, His wonderous powers and the moon and the sun at the same time was awesome.

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I know I saw a solar eclipse way back in elementary through a pinhole, but this had a stabilizing effect on me. Knowing that God is in control of everything.

Even at 67%, I really had to share it with my kids. I wanted to take my glasses to the schools…but didn’t want to disrupt their events. I text my daughter. She still couldn’t make it. So, I took the glasses to her. Again, glad I did. It is always nice to share life with someone else. Her husband came by with a different DIY viewer and we saw the eclipse three different ways. Very neat. Our eldest son got home from college in time to see the end of the eclipse, but still cool.

Lesson Learned

Okay, I am going to admit to something most, if not all, of you are going to face-palm yourselves over.

I download a malware onto our Mac three days ago and it has taken up most of my days. Literally. I have talked to three senior advisors. The first two, no fault of their own, felt satisfied that they had helped me remove the nasty beast. The third, bless his heart, spent a good part the day on the phone with me, trying everything he knew to help, all the while remaining as calm as if he was sitting in the shade sipping his favorite cool beverage enjoying everything about his view. Only at the end did he “lose his cool” with a  discouraged, “Man.” Needless to say, our Mac is still not fixed. I am running in “test” mode for now which is VERY limited at best. Our data, etc. has been sent to even higher Apple support. So, we wait.

While this whole thing has been going on I have learned a thing or two about computers and life:

*Apple products already have all that you need running in the background. No need to download web protection.

*BUT you HAVE to keep those updates up-to-date for all of the background goodies to function properly. I thought I had updated and was all good to go, but no. Now I know where I went wrong and will be much more on top of it from here on out.

*Apple has a parental setting and guest mode. No need for added filters.

*If you do want/need to download something onto your Apple, download it from the App Store and NOT the internet. The same web protection (K9 Web Protection) is available in the App Store. However, the ones outside the store well, you see where that got me.

*Apple’s staff (via phone) were all very nice and helpful with the exception of one gal. Maybe it was me too just getting frustrated at the whole situation.

*One’s back, elbow and ear can get mighty sore from sitting at a desk and talking on the phone all day. Again, those dear Apple workers. Their backs and ears must hurt after working all day.

*I also learned a thing or two about where to find this and that on our Mac. Very helpful. We have no Apple Store nearby and don’t have anyone we know of by us who can come over and show us what the heck we are doing. We usually make a long distance call to one friend and one family member for Apple help.

Overall, even though the malware really stinks, I had to buy a new external hard drive, I have spent MANY hours on the phone and thus a bit behind on my house work, I feel like a more confident Mac user.

(If my grammar is off on this post, which is highly likely, please excuse it for the next few days. I don’t have Grammarly to help correct my writing until I get this whole thing worked out. Thanks.)

Randomness

Summer is winding down, two more weeks left until school!!! Each summer gets better and better. We’ve stayed busy while learning to embrace calm steadiness.

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The General wanted swimming trunks to match big brother’s.

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I ordered as many groceries as possible from WalMart for the first time. I was able to get about half of our groceries sent to us through the mail. I ordered them on a Saturday afternoon and they arrived Wednesday afternoon. So a bit longer than their 2-day delivery offer. If I chose the pickup option I would’ve had to make two to three trips, which completely defeats the point. Everything except the taco seasoning pack was intact. I will more than likely stick to shopping in person.

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We have also been doing crafts. Our craft supplies and ideas are getting low.Thanks to Pinterest we found this cute idea to match the remaining supplies.

Thank You Lego

If you have kids, especially kids like ours, then you have Legos. We have a lot. We love them. I am always amazed at what the kids make with them. I am also thankful for the hours of quiet play they help to create.

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Recently, I bought an early Christmas present. To my delightful surprise, it contained a wheelchair! If you have been reading my blog you know our lives have been touched by wheelchairs and I will be forever grateful for them. You can read about our wheelchair adventures here and here.

While our life with wheelchairs was a temporary one I know so many other parents will be grateful for the new Lego wheelchair piece. Keep them coming Lego!

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The General Turns 5!

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Let me tell you about our most recent birthday boy. When he came to us at 2, he spoke about 5 Spanglish words. He was receiving OT, PT and Speech therapy. He was still drinking from a bottle. His coordination was off to the point where we had him tested for a number of things. He had it rough right from the start of his little life. (I will leave out the saddest details.)

He had been tossed around from bio home to bio home, then in two foster homes. He really never lived with his siblings. He had no idea why he was in our home. No idea what was going on. He had no words to express his confusion. So he used his body and lots of yelling. He has had back to back leg fractures, a number of blood tests done, a couple of minor operations, MANY tests of all sorts done.

He has had back to back leg fractures, a number of blood tests done, a couple of minor operations, MANY tests of all sorts done. ENTs, ER docs, Urologists, orthopedic Drs., eye Dr.s, a number of thereapists, etc. have been a big part of our lives.

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To say he has overcome a lot of obstacles would be an understatement. To say he has come so far seems so insignificant. When I sit in parent/teacher (preschool) meetings and they show me where he is, I never look at it as a negative. To them, they may see the deficiencies, to me to see only his gains.

He will be starting kindergarten this school year as a very young kindergartner, but I am not worried. I know he will do so well.

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I know our son will win people over, as he does everywhere. I know he will be a huge help, take charge and show kindness to those he is around. He knows no stranger and makes friends easy. His heart is big and is now such a loving, compassionate boy.

I have never met a more grateful child or adult for that matter. He is always thanking us for the littlest of things. He compliments freely and is comfortable with affection. He knows no other family but us. He doesn’t see the differences our family has. He is a unifier.

Our son makes us laugh all of the time. Though he is the youngest he steals the show all of the time and demands our attention. He knows what he wants and isn’t shy to tell you. He is super smart and we can tell he isn’t going to fight some of the battles his siblings have had to fight. (Thank you, Jesus!!)

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At his party, he saw this little boy and wanted to give him one of his cakes. Even though the mom pretty much treated him as you see in the photo, he brushed it off and found someone else to give it to.

I tell you this lovable fighter, this protector (he already protects me), this ever friendly guy is going to go far. I can’t wait to see what God has planned for him. We thank God all of the time for letting us parent him.