1. tonycutty

    Wow. Gritty and honest – that’s what I love about your posts, Aprille. To encourage you, my oldest son was hard work; he started with the Terrble Two’s and didn’t recover until he was in his twenties. But he’s a genius, he’s a gifted aeroplane pilot, and he’s a loyal, faithful son. Your Ezra may be hard work but I bet there’s a lot of gifting in there too. And you love him; that is obvious from what you write. Keep it up, Aprille – does anyone ever tell you you’re doin’ great? Because someone should. You are doing great, and you and Russ are the best parents your kids could wish for. Be encouraged.

    • Tony, seeing your name pop up in my comments just made my day. Your support in this genre of my writing means the world. And thank you so much for sharing about your son. Ezra is incredibly gifted, in spite of the challenges. I keep wondering when it will get easier, if ever. But I try to visualize him as a brilliant successful adult – the kind of man I KNOW he can grow up to be if we don’t lose hope. Thanks again for your kind words, and for following along in this new series.

  2. I can so relate to this post. When my son was about 2, I started getting those hand gestures to come down from the choir loft too. I was so distracted by his behavior and our efforts to control it, that I was getting very little out of the service each week. Then, when the priest (we’re Catholic) made some (what we consider) offensive comments during his homily one day, my husband decided to call it quits altogether. I struggle with what our next steps should be–I want my son to be raised in the church, but with his attention issues and my husband’s reluctance to attend with us, it won’t be easy.

  3. Kimberlee

    Beautiful writing! My husband and I were raised similarly and went to our present church for the same reasons you did your last! We have been experiencing all those emotions that you have with your old churches. God has not gifted us with children, and for that I am now grateful! I have seen people here come and go as I observe them go through exactly what you are describing with your son. Funny, I don’t welcome and encourage them to stay because I know that it is not the best place for their family and want them to have a place that would support them! Some congregations don’t want to get down and dirty and into the messiness of people’s lives like Jesus did. They don’t have time for that. In fact, some prefer to be spoon fed and socialize and feel more like country clubs with exclusive members that have hung together for years.
    We are serving in ministries, and are struggling with what to do now. Hard to feel like misfits in church, but praise God that in His presence, He comforts us. He is our healing balm of Gilad. HE never changes, nor do His ways, neither does His Truth!
    Because we have not found a Church that we feel at home in yet, we keep going to this one with an almost dread, attending when we are on to serve. A few have asked where we are, but I have no idea what to tell them. I wish they didn’t notice! It is hard to understand even ourselves as to the feelings about how we feel in our church and I most certainly don’t want to sour anyone!
    You have such a good way with words! It has at least helped me understand what exactly it is that I’m feeling and why. So much easier it is to read objectively and think about someone else’s life objectively. When it matches your own, the insights are so valuable! I’m so thankful to be reading this article now. It is an encouragement to me as we dread another Sunday coming of “where do you want to go”….I know that the Lord has a plan for us and His ways are perfect. The waiting is tough. Praying for a Church that we can call home. Thank you for your honesty! Thank you for speaking the truth in love. May God continue to use you through this blog! : )

    • For the first time in 12 years, I’m finally in a church where I feel like when a visitor shows up, I WANT them to stay. It’s a wonderful feeling.

      I wish I had better advice on HOW to find a church like this, but I can only hope that someday you will find a good church.

  4. Sarah

    Thank you for this, I can relate to so much of your feelings. Both my sons are physically exhausting, but my eldest son has sensory issues and I’ve never felt particularly welcomed in my church. The last time I attended the Minister ignored me and on occasions I have wrangled with my children on my own and others have pretended not to notice. It is hard and you feel very alone when your church doesn’t seem to acknowledge you when it takes all the energy and courage you have to take your young children out.

    I TOTALLY agree that church should be a sanctuary to feel you can show your weakness to others and God, as well as a formal worship session. I think that’s what puts me off at the moment. Knowing how close to God I feel (motherhood and grief have humbled me), but feeling a juxtaposition in not knowing how I ‘fit’ in the way the church is run. Being a shy, tired introvert doesn’t help. I’ll keep trying. Thanks for your posts, they are extremely helpful.

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