Saturday, September 17, 2011

Preparing for Sunday

I don’t know about your household, but Sunday mornings around here are usually chaotic.  Since it is usually the only morning of the week that we have somewhere we need to be, it is often difficult to change our normal routine.  This usually results in rushing about and then forgetting most of what I needed to take with me.  Needless to say, this is not how I want to begin my day, or week.
Many Christians refer to Sunday as Sabbath, but it isn’t the Sabbath.  That is Saturday.  While we are no longer under the law, we do follow the example of the early church and meet together in worship and fellowship on the first day of the week.  Starting the day off on a bad note can adversely affect our mind-frame in church.  We may be distracted, frustrated or just exhausted.  If we are unable to focus on the service, we will likely miss a blessing.
So, what’s a family to do?  I’ve asked God to help me better prepare on Saturday for Sunday.  A few summers ago my dad toured Israel for ten days.  In fact, my dad spent a Sabbath in Jerusalem while he was there.  He said the entire city shut down at 6pm on Friday and does not open back up until 6 pm on Saturday.  He said they weren’t even allowed to use an elevator, because that would require pushing the button, which was a no-no.  Knowing that modern-day Israel is basically a secular nation, I asked if the same applied to the country as a whole.  Does Tel Aviv shut down the same as Jerusalem?  He did not know, but thinks it is pretty much a nation-wide thing. (I’d love to know if any of my readers know the answer to this.  Leave a comment! Smile
Anyway, while I do not recommend quitting all work at 6pm on Saturday, I do feel it would be so beneficial to have everything in order before going to bed.  Here’s some ideas on ways to make Sunday mornings less hectic:
*Make sure your house is in order.  Do the dishes, sweep the kitchen floor and any necessary vacuuming, put away laundry.  Tidy up.  This way, when you return home on Sunday afternoon, you can focus on quality time with the family, or even take a nap, without worrying about any chores.
* Decide what’s going to happen for lunch on Sunday and make preparations.  If you eat out, then no problem.  If you will be lunching at home, do any prep work the day before so lunch can be quick and relaxing.
*Gather everything you will need to take with you.  Go ahead and stock the diaper bag of necessary items and put it, along with your Bible and anything else you may need, in the car.  Don’t forget your offering or tithe.  If you feel safe in doing so, put it in the car too.  If not, make sure it is in your purse or hubby’s wallet.
*   Choose ahead of time what everyone will be wearing to services.  For small children, go ahead and set it out.  Older kids need to at least know what they want to wear and make sure it is clean, wrinkle-free and ready to go the next day.  thumbnail       image credit

I don’t know how many times I’ve gone to put tights on Beauty only to discover at the last minute that they have a big run down one leg.  If I had prepared the night before, I would’ve had time to either purchase new tights or make a different selection.
*Bathe and wash hair before going to bed.  This eliminates the rush to the shower, and saves tons of time.
*Plan a simple breakfast.  The point is to have little to no clean up on Sunday.  Remember, you want to come home and relax without being greeted by dozens of breakfast dishes, that could possibly be paired with lunch dishes.  I don’t want to spend the afternoon doing dishes, do you?
*Hit the sheets.  Earlier than usual if you can.  Once again, a blessing may be missed if we are foggy-headed from fatigue.
*Arise early and prepare yourself mentally.  This is the most important thing we can do EVERY day, not just on Sunday.  Spend quiet time in the Word and prayer, asking for wisdom and blessing for the day.  Begin with thanksgiving and praise.
I hope you, my dear readers, find these tips useful.  What can you add to this list?

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Sarah said...

Tiberias shuts down for the Sabbath, as we rode a "Sabbath elevator" with an old Jewish man.

When I go home, Sundays are super chaotic. We always leave on time, but it's a struggle to do it!

Marcia said...

Very interesting! Thanks Sarah!

Green Goose said...

I love that you gave both practical AND spiritual advice. Great article. Sunday mornings can be loaded with pitfalls, but they are so important for how the rest of the week goes. Thank you!

Kelli said...

Hello! Nice to meet you =) Stopping by from Titus 2 Tuesdays. I totally understand where you are coming from with hectic Sundays. I am thankful that our church service is at 10, so it's a little later, but still, the mornings can be so rushed, just what the enemy wants to use to cloud our hearts with anything but love and stillness to sit before Jesus that morning. Thanks for sharing your suggestions, I think I am going to implement a few this week =)