Family communion, 9/22/16: The Force Beckons

Not every time is a grand adventure, or a deep encounter with the divine, or a tailor-made service wrapped up in a bow. Last week was one of our better times reading Scripture, sharing communion, and praying together.

Tonight wasn’t.

We tried to keep things winsome and informal again. We pulled out a different children’s Bible and A. said he wanted to hear the story about the night Jesus died. My first thought was, “Well how about that!” He even sat on my lap for a little bit while I read the story.

But soon other things caught his attention: His younger brother scrambling up a rocking chair. The gingerbread cookies. But most of all, the Star Wars book that had been sitting by the hearth for days, collecting dust. All of a sudden it was his favorite book. He HAD to read it right now. And we simply could not get him to put it down for 5 minutes and focus on the rest of our little homemade service.

We tried praying together but he was just too distracted. He could not be un-distracted, even when I put the book away. When we asked him if he wanted to give God thanks for anything, he responded, “I want to ask God to give me lots of cool things.” Courtney and I exchanged concerned glances.

She valiantly tried to turn it into a teaching moment and tell A. the story of Solomon, the king who asked God for wisdom instead of riches, but it was no use. He simply wasn’t listening. So Courtney and I just prayed some brief prayers instead while the boys returned to their intergalactic book.

Sigh.

But it’s a good reminder that SO much of this will feel like 2 steps forward, 1 step back. There’s still progress being made, even on the off-nights. And it makes me already look forward to next week, and the week after that, and the week after that… which I guess is sort of the point.

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