Sunday, July 11, 2010

Sunday Behavior

Have you ever felt like a sacrament sermon was given specifically for you—that the words were inspired to give peace and comfort, guidance and enlightenment on a trial you were facing in that exact moment in your life? It’s a warm/fuzzy feeling, that one.

Have you ever felt like a sacrament sermon was given specifically because of you… and not because of something you did right, but because of something you did wrong? That’s a whole different feeling entirely.

Today the stake presidency came to our ward with a very urgent, very specific message. Three talks, one full hour—the topic: sacrament meeting reverence (translation: “controlling your children during church”).

Upon hearing the subject matter, I rubbed my nose and shuffled my feet from side to side. My mind flashed back to the time Doug yelled “Are you going to spank me, Mom?!” at the top of his lungs right after the sacrament prayer. It was our first week in the new ward and set a firm precedence for things to come.

My kids struggle at church. They struggle loud and they struggle big. The Stake presidency must’ve caught wind of it. I’d always romanticized the idea of being someone’s muse, but somehow, this is not what I had in mind.

One of the counselors spoke about arming our diaper bags with reverent, spiritual activities: family photo albums, BOM storybooks, blank paper for children to draw pictures of temples and portraits of the bishop. I looked over at Kiana’s coloring book. Holy Hannah! The Little Mermaid is naked! Princess Jasmine is dressed like a harlot! How had I never noticed this before?!

Next, the counselor told up to make sure the snacks we brought for our children were clean and non-distracting. I looked over at Doug. There was a tootsie pop stuck in his hair.

I spent the whole meeting hypersensitive of every move and noise my children made, my shushing noises sounding like a windstorm in Kansas more than a motherly reminder at good behavior. I could feel the ward’s eyes on me—judging me, rebuking me, pitying me. And then, just as the stake president concluded with his testimony on Sunday reverence, THWACK. A Disney’ Princesses coloring book had sailed through the air and beaned me right in the noggin.

It was too good. I had to laugh. And I did.


...Laura... said...

LOL!! Oh too funny. I love it, and I love the way you write. It makes me feel like I was sitting right behind you during sacrament mtg. Actually, if I was sitting right behind you, maybe people wouldn't be able to tell if it was my kids or yours?! In fact, it probably would have been my kid who reached up and put the tootsie pop in the hair of the little boy in front of him (yes he's done that, only it was a girl, who I didn't know, and her hair was beautiful... before the tootsie pop anyway!). Thanks for the good laugh :)

Janssen said...


Also, I have never to this day seen the entire Little Mermaid movie all the way through because my dad thought the clothing was so scandalous.

Kristy said...

Hee hee! Doug and Kimball are such kindred spirits...

Blake and Meg said...

There needs to be a Sunday play-pin in the middle of the congregation that we can all throw our kids into! They can stay occupied and we can keep them contained. The adults will just put on headphones so we can listen to the message. See, they've got it all wrong!

Kara said...

I starting busting out laughing when I read your descriptions of the Disney coloring book. Holy Hannah! lol. I'm sure every young mom was thinking something similar. Seriously we're doing the best we can! I think if the child is there and wearing clothes we should be commended. Christian took off his shoes and pants yesterday, and then threw a tantrum for everyone to see. I heard some giggles as I quietly exited with a screaming, half naked, bucking bronco.

Jake and Kim said...

Oh my goodness I promise your kids are so good in sacrament!! It's funny, I could feel what you felt, for every mom sitting in that chapel...I was thinking "if I had children right now I would seriously be scrutinizing every move they made today...Are they talking to me?... Maybe next week I'll sit in the back.." It's only natural, no matter how good your kids are! And ps not one hour earlier I was watching Doug during Sharing Time and was impressed with how intently he was paying attention..

Dianna said...

Funny stuff! Have you ever heard the story of how two year old Abbey announced rather loudly during the passing of the Sacrament that she had quit smoking? Kristy can fill you in on that, but I only mention it to let you know that every mom thinks their kids are the naughtiest, noisiest little monsters, but they aren't. I say that those members of the stake presidency should take some shifts of reverence patrol for awhile.