My six-year-old Everett refuses to leave me during church services, instead of going to children bible study. He is a momma’s boy but not necessarily to the point that he is attached to my hip. It is strange for him to choose to stay and be bored then to go and do crafts.
I have been going through a transition as of late. Talk of God is on my lips more than ever before. I am seeking my spiritual identity or perhaps, home. Attending services is a relatively new thing for my family. We all want to grow closer to our Lord. I am even hearing talk of baptisms amongst my loved ones. I am overjoyed.
The last few Sundays Everett has snuggled up to me on the church pew. When it comes time to sing our praises we are instructed to stand. I am a singer. Not a great singer but a singer none the less. I love showing my praises in this form. As we start to sing Everett always reaches up to place my hand over my heart. I immediately feel the need to move it to a more acceptable position. However If I do so, he relentlessly places my hand right back over my heart. I have explained to him that worship is different from saying the pledge of allegiance, which is something new and important to a kindergartener. He tells me that he doesn’t care and my hand should be over my heart as I sing. I admit at first my reaction to his insistent behavior was of embarrassment. ‘What will people think?’ Then it hit me, why wouldn’t I place my hand over my heart when I praise God? Eventually I relaxed into the position deemed important by my little smarty pants. Do you know what happened next?! My connection with God, while his praises rolled off my tongue, deepen to a level I had not yet reached before. My heart IS where my savior resides, is it not? Did my child of God know such a simple thing because he was not afflicted by judgement or embarrassment? Yes, I believe so.
We all get caught up in how things are “supposed” to be and lose sight of what works for us as an individual. I am blessed to have learned this lesson. My worshipping was improved by a change in gesture. God speaks to those who listen and sometimes his voice is hidden behind a sweet child’s determination.
Art by Michael Lennox