Sunday, July 29, 2007

The Lord's Day

The first Sunday School I remember was in a brand-new church building on Green Street. I was dressed in Sunday clothes, which meant starched cotton dress, white cotton stockings, and "Mary Jane" shoes-- black patent leather with a strap across the instep....

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In church the whole family sat together in one pew... We were a family. We were meant to stand and sit and kneel before the Lord together and, all objections notwithstanding (we raised many), I believe he was right... Sitting still was a point of doctrine. Judging by the ceaseless wriggling, twisting, getting up and down, and traipsing out to the restroom that one sees in church today I gather that most parents assume that it is impossible for little children to learn to sit still, even for an hour, and therefor cruel to expect it. To that I say rubbish! In the first place, I know it's possible-- we learned it and I know some children today who learn it... In the second place, I believe that it's wrong not to expect it, for in addition to being a fundamental lesson in a child's submission to the will of his parents, it is also the best place to begin to train mastery of the body. To control movement in obedience to parents enables a child to control movement later in obedience to his own will.

-Elisabeth Elliott

Taken from The Shaping of a Christian Family, by Elisabeth Elliott

1 comment:

Mrs. Bonnie said...

How right you are! People are stunned by the fact that we don't cart Audrey off to the nursery ( she's to young for Sunday School), AND that she sits quietly, looking at books and eating cheerios. I still don't know what we are going to do about Sunday School. I think she would enjoy it, but I also want her to be able to sit and be good in the service.
Brady is another story, as he's discoverd the joys of shreiking quite happily. I usually end up standing in the back with him, so we can exit without to much disruption.