“When will I have to stop going to church?” asked the little boy.
“What?” I responded, not believing I could have heard right.
“When will I have to stop going to church?” he repeated.
Noticing my bewilderment, he clarified, “When I get bigger, when will I have to stop going to church?”


This a not a child in a country whose government is about to close up Christian churches, nor is he a child with a debilitating disease which will stop his leaving his home. He is not a child whose parents are poverty stricken, drugged, uneducated, or untrustworthy. No, he is a healthy child of Christian parents who are comfortably well off and who love him dearly, who would do anything for him including working endless hours, sometimes even seven days a week.

I guess he believes it when the adults in his life say, “I can’t go to church because I have too much to do.”

Luke 21:34 And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with…cares of this life,….

About oneta hayes

ABOUT ME Hello. To various folks I am Neat’nee, Mom, Grandma Neta, Gramma, Aunt Neta, Aunt Noni, Aunt Neno, and Aunt Neto (lots of varieties from little nieces and nephews). To some I’m more like “Didn’t you used to be my teacher?” or “Don’t I know you from someplace?” To you, perhaps, I am a Fellow Blogger. Not “fellow” like a male or a guy, but “fellow” like a companion or an adventurer. I would choose to be Grandma Blogger, and have you pull up a chair, my website before you, while I tell you of some days of yore. I have experienced life much differently than most of you. It was and is a good life. I hope to share nuggets of appreciation for those who have gone before me and those who come after me. By necessity you are among those who come after me and I will tell you of those who came before. Once upon a time in a little house on a prairie - oops, change that lest I commit plagiarism - and change that “house on the prairie” to “dugout on the prairie.” So my story begins...
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  1. shoreacres says:

    Isn’t it true that they see reality far more clearly than adults do, sometimes? As I like to say (probably ad nauseum) all of us have all the time there is. Our responsibility is figuring out how to use it.

    • oneta hayes says:

      So true. Now that I have more flexible time than ever before, I find that I squander a lot of it. Generally chasing rabbits, interesting tidbits but not vital compared to clearing my desk as I have been promising myself that I am “going to do today,” no, that was yesterday, and the day before…

      • dawnlizjones says:

        Bob and I retire in a few months (end of the school year) and I run the risk of saving tasks for “when I retire”. But some things need to not be put off! Important things, like relationships. (My desk, however, is on the retirement list…)

        • oneta hayes says:

          Don’t give me any encouragement about the desk! Added to it today with next goal to prepare for next Sun. Teaching Malachi. I’ve been a long time on the minor prophets, but found a lot of good stuff there. I did go through some Bible study stuff and weeded out what I know I will never use. Kept my units on Gen, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Duet., Psalms, Ezek, Isaiah and the 12 minor prophets. I need to do them again myself. Jog my memory.

  2. bisimodupe1975 says:

    Hmmmn… Thought provoking. We have got to show our children that church is not a convenient or inconvenient trip but a place we love to go to because we love God.

    • oneta hayes says:

      It is also a vital choice for keeping our children with “like-minded” people with whom we would like them to associate. The church was so important to the values and interests of my sons. Generally it is true that “birds of a feather flock together.” And it is the God-ordained place for spiritual training second only to the family.

  3. joyroses13 says:

    Wow! That is poignant!

  4. Faye says:

    Yes you go to Church ie a building because you love the Lord and hunger for fellowship with His People. We however, the believers, are the Church…..not any building or denomination and gradually as the people have come to realize this they are confident to KNOW the God who lives with and in them will never led them go. Loving Him as adults will determine our prayer life and our Church (building) going. Our children ,natural) thank God, are finally getting to realize this. Love of God is why we fellowship, why we worship, why we pray etc etc.

    • oneta hayes says:

      Children associate the word church with the building where they gather to learn about Jesus and find friends. You are, of course, right about the “church” being believers. But that is not the most common application of the word, church. And that is not the group Jesus spoke about in Revelations when he left messages for the seven churches, neither is it the meaning of the churches Paul visited. Thanks for extended thoughts. 😀

  5. Roos Ruse says:

    We are fortunate that I worked for our church when my guys were in Jr. Hi & High School. We frequently talked about relationship with God vs church attendence and tradition. Great post, Oneta.

  6. Hmmm. This speaks to me in a profound manner. Now and again, we’ve treated Church as something to do when it’s convenient. Simple yet very insightful post.

    • oneta hayes says:

      Thank you, Jacque. Most children have soft, tender, and accepting hearts to hearing the story of Jesus. Is it very important that they find they are loved by the “Highest” authority. I think it contributes to their respect and appreciation for all authority, which is very important for law abiding citizens, who can find more peace with themselves and with the world.

  7. Pingback: Decrease in church attendance not only a recent feature #5 Necessity of attendance | Bijbelvorser = Bible Researcher

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