You’re in the middle of worship. The entire church has their heads bowed in fervent, quiet prayer when suddenly your kid erupts like a verbal volcano and discovers that your previously vetted out and carefully chosen toy can be:
- whacked noisily against the pew in front of you,
- launched like a Cuban missile onto the other side of the auditorium,or
- just in general be likened to an explosion of sound and excitement.
We’ve all been there. We’ve all felt that mixture of panic, frustration, and embarrassment. These things never seem to happen in the middle of a great, noisy, swelling song, only during Communion or a prayer! So what’s the secret to making your quiet bag a success? I’m here with the answers. Maybe…
Pack in grace for yourself. Grace for your kid. Grace knowing that no matter how hard you try or how well you prepare, you can’t always be perfect or utterly quiet or completely still. And that’s OK.
I’m not saying to let your kid run loose on Sunday morning while throwing him goldfish in the middle of the sermon. But I am saying that it’s OK if neither you or your kid are perfect. Give yourself the grace that you would extend to other moms. And find peace in the fact that God sees your efforts and will reward them.
I know. This is like a dirty word with Christians. The problem with praying for patience is that you get it, right?
But you’ll need it. You need lots and lots and lots of patience to quiet your kids, to miss yet another chunk of the worship service, to smile instead of strangle.
Patience is knowing that you’re doing this for the end game. Nobody in their right mind says, “Boy, that mother of two toddlers and a baby is coming to church and just filling her spiritual cup to overflowing.”
What she’s doing is showing her kids that even when it’s hard for her, even when it’s not ideal for her, even when she may only get five minutes out of the worship service–it is still the most important thing to do. There is nothing more important than going to worship the Creator of the Universe. To give Him the praise and adoration He deserves. And to teach our kids to do the very same.
A Sense of Humor
This is, perhaps, the key to surviving not just a worship service, but motherhood in general! Laughing at the crazy, the ludicrous, and the full moon coming out in your kid (and perhaps you!) is the best way to relieve your stress.
It’s OK to find it funny when your son has a poopsplosion in the middle of opening prayer. And It’s OK to giggle when he happily shares his now-slimy cheerios with the little widow you chose to sit next to this morning. Finding joy in these moments is perfectly OK!
Without joy, you’ll turn into a little ball of stress–and that’s no fun for anyone.
So this Sunday, good luck! And good mothering!
Be encouraged by these posts as well!
- All I Want for Christmas…A Christmas Wishlist - November 16, 2018
- Just Ask Joseph: Running from Sin - May 28, 2018
- Learning from Grace: Lessons in Servanthood - April 18, 2018
um..let’s start with the patience for me 🙂
Such a good idea! I had never thought about just having a bag of quiet things for a child!
This is such a good post! Been there, done that with loud noises due to kids.
[…] The Secret to a Successful Quiet Bag – January 10, 2017 […]
As a mom of seven, I had to learn patience and to have a sense of humor while trying to train my herd to listen during worship. Yes, your ideas are spot on. Thanks.
Yes! I wish I had this particular bag packed years ago! Now most of my kiddos are older, and the youngest will usually model his sisters’ behavior. I think I am now gravitating towards needing to pack some grace and patience for other people’s children, reminding myself that I was once in their shoes. Thank you for this post.
I think these are all great tips for moms. Church can be stressful with little ones so remembering these suggestions helps encourage.