Sunday, September 30, 2007

Worship in left field

Driving to church this morning I saw a heart-breaking sight: a boy in a baseball uniform.

Why was it heart-breaking? Because ten-year-old boys don’t belong on a baseball field on Sunday morning; they belong in church.

I have never believed that it is a sin to miss church on a given Sunday. My parents used to try to find a church if we were on vacation over a weekend; this can be awkward and unpredictable to say the least. I don’t think that’s necessary.

But I don’t think it’s the same thing to be home and not go because you’ve got something else to do. Even if it isn’t technically a sin (and I may be wrong about that one), think about the message that it sends to tell your kids, “We’re going to be in church every Sunday – unless there’s a [insert sport] game.”

It could be that this boy’s family is not Christian, but I’ve known Christians who did let their kids play on Sunday. I’ve even known church league teams that played on Sunday.

If we want to raise our kids to think that church is optional and that religion is just one part of our lives, we should continue. If we want our kids to grow up thinking that our lives revolve around Christ and our decisions should be made in line with His character and mission, we need to put our foot down (each family and as a community) and say that our children (and adults, for that matter) will not be skipping church for sports and let the chips fall where they may.

My kids aren’t in little league yet, but that decision has already been made.

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