Sunday, November 14, 2010

Where do you spend your Sunday mornings?

If you're like me, Sunday mornings are for lying in bed and reading or tweeting or cooking breakfast.
On occasion, Sunday mornings are for errands and productivity. This morning was one of my productive mornings. As I drove down Lawrence Avenue to get to my recycling center and PetCo, I passed a church. The parking lot was full of cars. These cars, I assume, had carried families or couples or friends to their place of worship.

Growing up, I never attended church regularly. Both my parents were raised in homes that attended church. I don't know why -- maybe someday I'll ask -- but they never took my sister and I to church. I have gone on occasion with my grandparents and friends but I just don't think I need church. I'm sure some of you (no matter what religion) may thing that is strange. But if you grew up with it, wouldn't whatever religion you practice actually be a part of who you are and your beliefs? Just as if you were (or were not) taught to value recycling or to treat people different from you with respect, you learned (even if you had to be dragged to church or where ever) to value religion and that experience and tradition.

I don't think having a religion is bad, but I just don't think it is a necessary part of my set of values. I've learned to forgive people, I respect people (until they do something to lose it) and, most importantly, I believe I am a good person. Not perfect, but good. I try to do the right thing and treat people well. It's a work in progress but I don't think going to church every Sunday will make that suddenly easy.

Sometimes growing up, I felt left out because my family did not attend church. But I don't think it's because I was missing out on practicing a religion but because I was not doing something so many other people were doing. But realizing that difference, I knew that was not the reason to start going to church. The one person who made me wish I was religious is my grandpa. He knew we didn't go to church and he didn't love me less, but I just wonder what it would have been like to share more of that with him. And to know, what exactly he got from the Bible. We shared many of the same characteristics: sense of humor, caring, loyal. It also seemed like we shared the same common sense and practical nature. And that common sense and practicality is where I just don't think I can jump into a religion without having known it growing up and instilled in me. My grandpa, I think, did grow up with religion and that probably made a big difference. But maybe having such practicality, some people need that something else; that need to explain all the unexplainable. To explain or help understand what they can't control. I would think I need that, too. But maybe my rational side knows that not everything can be explained and there are sometimes just not any answers.

What do you do on Sunday mornings?

4 comments:

  1. I grew up going to church occasionally, more often than not. We got excited when we could convince my dad to go along, because it meant we could have lunch at Pizza Hut afterwards.

    I always think we'll start going to church again when we have kids. I don't know why I think I have to have kids to go. But I like sleeping in way too much right now.

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  2. My Sunday mornings are spent having breakfast with my hubby, taking the dog out, and the going to church on weekends I don't volunteer. When I do volunteer I have to be there for first service so I usually wake up, shower and go. The service itself is only an hour long so I still have the afternoon to do my Sunday things...brunch, shopping, being lazy, football games, etc.

    I grew up the same way you did...both of my parents attended church but decided not to go once they had kids. So my sister and I never grew up attending church. It's only been recently that I've decided, on my own, to seek it out because I felt like I wanted to try to find a community in Lawrence that I could belong to. I LOVE the church I go to now. I could never do an ultra-conservative, 'holy roller' type of church because that makes me uncomfortable. My church takes people as they are, messes and all, because that's what Jesus did. It's a super casual environment with a loud band and an excellent pastor who gives funny yet practical messages that are relevant to my life, not antiquated rantings from the Bible. If you do ever feel like checking it out, it's EastLake Community Church at South Jr High. No pressure whatsoever, though! www.eastlakelawrence.com if you want to see it online first.

    Sorry didn't mean to become an advertisement :)

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  3. Thanks Kelly!
    I have heard of EastLake and thought if I were ever to go to church, I would definitely check that one out.

    Community (or the chance to socialize) was something I definitely needed right out of college (still in college town, most college friends moved away).

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  4. We never went to church growing up; I don't think my parents did when they grew up. We have "our" church: the one we go to for Christmas and Easter. It's also where my cousin is getting married next month.

    I always felt a little left out not going to church. My city is full of Irish Catholics; I thought it was weird not to be Catholic and then not to go to church. But as I grew up, I realized that I'm fine without it. I don't really believe in organized religions. I was christened Episcopal, which I'm happy with since they're pretty liberal.

    But, as I've grown older, I've grown to realize that we don't need religion or church to have morals or know right from wrong. Some people disagree, but I then point to my track record of doing bad things and getting in trouble... and blame all that on "lack of church." ;)

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