Sundays have become less spiritual and more stressful for Nate and I than we would like it to be. During Sunday school we teach a class of seven and eight-year-old boys and girls, and by teach I mean that there's a little bit of teaching going on surrounded mostly by Nate trying to keep one child in his seat and stop him from randomly shouting, another child wandering the edge of the classroom tracing the brick walls with her fingers, all while I try to keep the other kids engaged and on subject long enough for them to learn something, anything.
Then there's sharing/singing time with the rest of the primary. . .trying to keep that many kids contained and behaved in one space for any length of time is tricky. I've got one kid who sits in the corner every week and rarely participates (at least he's not being disruptive), another who only sits sideways in his seat, one who will not sit in his seat at all, a girl who gets up every five minutes to go talk to her mom or is constantly chit-chatting to her younger brother in the row in front of us and rolls her eyes when I tell her not to talk. I could go on for a while, but you get my point that Sunday is the farthest thing from being uplifting. Nathan and I get home from church and the only thing I want to do is take and nap and veg.
This past Sunday was a little better, thankfully! We had another adult sit in our classroom and she was able to handle the wandering girl when her wandering became too disruptive, Nate could focus on the wild child, and I was able to teach a nice lesson to the remaining students without the distractions. In sharing time, another adult joined us so our ratio of kids to adults was almost even. It was wonderful! I was able to feel the Spirit during the lesson and I am so grateful for that.
In the evening, we went back to the tide pools we visited last week. We wondered if something like this was an appropriate sabbath day activity and we decided that for us it was. We decided that it's better than watching TV or napping, and what greater testament is there to God's power than the beauty of His creations? I feel renewed when I wander through nature, taking it all in. I am continually amazed at the natural world around me. This place was beautiful last week in the full glory of the sunshine and warmth, and I was amazed at the beauty it still held even in the gloom. There was so much activity going on in the tide pools, they were full of hermit crabs wandering around in their stolen homes, and regular crabs scurrying for cover at the first sight of you. I even saw an octopus! A little one, about eight inches long, shooting through one of the bigger pools. Although I have yet to see a starfish I am still holding out hope. Maybe I will next time. Nature is the best chapel for me.