Monday, February 3, 2014

I'd like to bear my testimony....

In our church, we believe in fasting - where we go without food, as a sacrifice, to show the Lord that we are willing to give up our physical desires for spiritual things. Jesus fasted - the Bible teaches of fasting - and we incorporate it into our worship. The first Sunday of the month has been designated as "Fast Sunday". It helps us to make fasting a part of our life. Little children, people who have health concerns,  and women who are pregnant or nursing are discouraged from fasting. 

On Fast Sunday, our meeting is a little different. Instead of our normal service of prepared talks given by members of the congregation on a pre-selected topic, the time is opened for anyone to come up and share their belief in God and His hand in their life. Sometimes it is a very spiritual meeting for all involved. Sometimes it is humorous. Sometimes it is a little awkward, like when those who share go a little too deep into their situation.

Since I am not able to fast right now, and neither is Carter, I didn't announce to him that it was Fast Sunday. As we are finishing up partaking of the Sacrament, Carter says "I want to go up today and talk." Totally uncharacteristic of Carter. He is very shy in front of groups of people, and still struggles to participate when all the children go up and sing. We have a disabled man in the congregation that tries to be the first one up every Fast Sunday. I explained to Carter that he could go up after that man was finished (I didn't want to make it a race, and have someone tripping over his cane or walker to beat Carter up there.).

I knew this day would come. I knew he would want to get up and share his beliefs with everybody. He is just that kind of kid. However, I figured I would be able to prep him before hand. We would sit down and talk about it. I would ask him what he does believe, and help him form it into something he could feel comfortable saying. I remember going up as a child and getting so nervous, I forgot what to say. I stood there very embarrassed, and it took me a long time to go back. I didn't want that to happen to him.

He was so enthusiastic to go up, there was no time to talk to him about what he was going to say. He went right up, they pulled out the step stool, and he boldly spoke into the microphone:

"I love my Mommy and Daddy."

Then he got down and came back to our pew.

Later in the meeting, he remembered more of what he wanted to say and wanted to go back up. I told him he'd have to remember it for next month.

He had an assignment to give the closing prayer in Primary (the children's meeting) also. This is the first time that he wanted us there. The first time, he saw David and only wanted to sit with him, not give his prayer. The next time, we hid, and he did fine. The third time, he saw me and just wanted me to do it for him. This time, he was very adamant that we not miss it. He saw us both sit down (there was no where to hide this time), and he got up and gave his prayer to the whole audience. It was a great prayer. It wasn't rushed or repetitive. He thought out what he wanted to say that would benefit the other children, and he said it. I am very proud of him.

The last time I taught preschool, Carter said the prayer. After he was finished, another boy yelled out "WOW! You can say the prayer all by yourself?" The other kids usually need a little prompting, which most kids do. Carter NEVER has. He has always considered it interrupting during the prayer, and takes great offense to it.

Such a funny kid!