Attend church or go to the recital?

When we discovered that our daughter’s spring dance recital was on Wednesday night, I began to wonder. For years I have talked about the importance of putting worship first. Wednesday nights, in our church and in our family, are important for growing in faith. We’re committed to it. Not in legalistic way, I hope. There are times when because of vacation, being out of town, or family things that we don’t make it on Wednesday or Sunday, but every week we are in town, we go.

I recently read a quote from Almost Christian by Dean, “We can’t simply expose our kids to faith, we must teach it to them.

I was at a crossroads. I would hate to have her miss the spring dance recital. But more than that, I would hate for her to grow up believing that commitment to Christ, worship and his church was something that happened when nothing else was on the schedule.

One Wednesday night in first grade may not be an issue, but what about half the Wednesday nights once she is involved in more as she gets older? Or all the Wednesday nights because of something else? What about a season of Sunday morning worship services because another thing on schedule? I don’t want to worry about something that hasn’t happened, but to be honest, I fretted over the dance recital. I even asked the YMCA why they picked a Wednesday night when the classes are typically on Thursday and there are lots of weekends to choose from. The response: “because Wednesday nights were the most open on the schedule.” That’s probably true. The church has had influence, for the most part, at least in our area, in keeping Sunday mornings and Wednesday evenings free for worship. However, it’s changing and changing quickly. I recently heard the only 15% of the this generation is Christian and so it’s understood why church wouldn’t be a bedrock in culture. Wednesday nights are up for grabs, as are Sunday mornings and evenings!

In the conversation with the YMCA, I mentioned that it would be tough to participate because we have church on Wednesday nights. The YMCA employee said she understood, she had church too.

The end result:  they moved the recital up to 4:00 pm and we were able to do both the recital and Wednesday evening worship. I’m glad I talked with the leaders.  I’m sorry that I said, “why would the Young Men’s CHRISTIAN Association do something like this?” – Just kidding… I wouldn’t do that, I don’t think.

What are your thoughts?  How do we have kids involved in activities, but also stay committed to a life of worship and ministry without it becoming legalistic?

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