What do your Sunday mornings look like? I’ve invited my friend Nicki to share about her Sunday morning Scripture routine in our series about morning scripture and what it can mean in making our Sunday mornings the best they can be.
When my husband and I found out we couldn’t have kids naturally, I was so mad at God. I often broke down in tears during church and felt so embarrassed. It was so awkward! Years later, when we went through a failed adoption of three siblings ages 2, 4 and 6, grief consumed me. Anger too.
I was beyond overwhelmed at that point. The idea of placing all my anger and my pain aside on a Sunday morning to focus on worshipping the Lord was a task that seemed insurmountable.
I finally realized it is ok to come to worship messy and imperfect, there’s no need to clean ourselves up.
Somewhere along the way, I forgot that simple, yet wondrous truth. Our Savior is perfect so we don’t need to be.
When I just came as I am, tear filled, angry and grief stricken, I discovered that it’s practically impossible to leave worship feeling defeated if you keep your eyes fixed on Jesus!
Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, for our “God is a consuming fire.” Hebrews 12:28-29
If you’re going through a hard season of life, here are some Scripture verses and tips that have helped me prepare my heart for Sunday worship with Sunday morning Scripture.
I’m still a work in progress, but it gets easier the more I keep my eyes fixed on Him!
Worship begins the evening before.
The sooner we realize that the things we do Saturday evening have a dramatic impact on our time in corporate worship Sunday morning, it becomes easier to make this a priority.
Set a boundary to shut the TV off or leave a social event at a set time. Don’t binge on a ton of junk so your sleep is disrupted by an upset stomach or a sugar high.
Lay out everyone’s clothes in advance, plan a low key breakfast and set the coffee pot timer the night before. Maybe implement a no snooze alarm rule. All these little things can make or break a Sunday morning, especially in a fragile season of life.
If you are worried about things, write them down on a piece of paper and then take time to pray and give your burdens over to the Lord.
Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light. Matthew 11: 28-30
You don’t need to show up in your Sunday best to worship the Lord, but wearing clean clothes and having a full belly sure can help you stay focused on the message and the music instead of dreaming of that next cup of coffee!
Arriving early is always better than late, but find what works well for your family. My husband thinks 15 min early is showing up late. I do not subscribe to his way of thinking at all! The idea of showing up 30-45 minutes in advance stresses me out! But the idea of showing up just 15 minutes before service stresses him out. Ain’t nobody got time for that! Learn to compromise.
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others. Philippians 2: 3-4
Renew your mind.
Incorporating worship into pre-church activities is a great way to get your heart set on church worship with Sunday morning Scripture! I like to pray while I’m buttering the toast or sing a song while I flat iron my hair.
Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. Colossians 3:2
God’s got our messes on Sunday mornings. He’s in control.
Sing to the Lord! Give praise to the Lord! He rescues the life of the needy from the hands of the wicked. Jeremiah 20:13
Once I’m finally seated at church the enemy likes to flood my mind with whatever crazy is going on that week. I usually type a quick note on my phone to give my brain permission to focus on time with my Father. My hard stuff isn’t going anywhere.
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Philippians 4:8
Don’t just go through the motions.
There is a big difference between going through the motions of worship and having your heart reflect on the Lord and His sovereign goodness. Lift your heart up to the Lord!
The Lord says: “These people come near to me with their mouth and honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. Their worship of me is based on merely human rules they have been taught.” Isaiah 29:13
Worship is a lifestyle, it doesn’t just happen Sunday morning.
So get real with God. Do a soul check. How do you expect to truly open your heart and bow down to the throne of grace on Sunday if you aren’t open to the sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit daily in your heart?
Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Psalm 51:10
No one is perfect, that’s why we all desperately need a Savior. We all have sins that we like to ignore, instead of choosing to let the Holy Spirit do the good work in us that God intends to use to draw us closer to Him.
Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies. 1 Corinthians 6: 19-20
Put on your armor with Sunday morning Scripture.
The enemy knows you are headed to church on Sunday morning and wants to make that as difficult and annoying of a process as possible. In fact, he doesn’t want you to get anywhere near a church or open that Bible of yours. Don’t let him win!
Armor up and tell that enemy to take a hike, you are a daughter of the King! You have Jesus on your side so the battle has already been won.
Put on the full armor of God with Sunday morning Scripture, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Ephesians 6: 11-12
Claim the victory and bring that celebratory spirit with you to church Sunday morning!
Nicki Schroeder is a Christian radio personality, writer and speaker from the Midwest. She is the creator of “The Grace Challenge,” Bible encouragement to help you glorify Jesus in the middle of your busy, beautiful life. Nicki strives for authenticity in her relationship with Jesus and others. She is a soul encourager who loves coffee, cupcakes and Jesus, just not in that order. Visit her for monthly encouragement and freebies at www.nickischroeder.com