Can I Go to Church Daddy?

Hudson has started getting into this habit. Here is what it is. He keeps asking to go to church.

Now this is a great habit, and no he doesn’t ask to go to church as much as he asks to watch the movie Cars. But he still asks it consistently.

The question for me is…why?

I mean I love our church. It is a huge blessing. It is an amazing place. But I spent a lot of time thinking and wondering why does Hudson keep asking to come to church. This matters to me because I’ve seen and known lots of pastor’s kids who didn’t want to go to church or to be associated with church. So put more succinctly I was wondering: what is it about this church that draws Hudson to it? What is it about these people that make Hudson want to go to church on a Friday morning?

I don’t think it’s just the nursery toys, although he does love the giant Mater that is there. I think the reason he loves to come to church is this: it’s his family.

You see on Sunday I saw how a dad here chased Hudson around for 15 minutes playing with him. I saw how older people in our congregation gave him cookie, after cookie, after cookie. I saw how people talked with him, helped him, and even saved him from falling overtop a chair (our little boy is a big climber). People picked him up, laughed with him, and asked him about Asher.

In essence, I saw people care. I saw people include him into the church family. And this is what makes church beautiful. Because church isn’t a building, but a people who welcome others.

This is what the church is to be: a family that welcomes. And this is why I love our church, and why I know Hudson wants to be there. Because people make him feel special and a part of things and our church does this not just with Hudson but with others too. I’ve seen parents showing off their new baby, I’ve seen seniors down on the floor playing with new kids, I’ve seen teenagers watching other people’s kids so that the parents can talk and connect. And this is a beautiful thing.

So I know why Hudson wants to go to church…because it’s a place he belongs. And I hope you too feel like you belong, because Jesus is clear, in his Kingdom, if we follow him we all belong…

Being Theologically Corrected by a 2-Year Old

Hudson loves church. It’s possible because our nursery here has better toys than we do at home. Mostly he loves the gigantic Mater that we have here.

But for a while Hudson was very proud that “This is Daddy’s church”. I’m pretty sure he thinks I own the building. He would also point and say, “Daddy’s church, daddy’s church, daddy’s church”. I tried to explain that I didn’t own the church but he kept at it.

Then one day it all shifted.

We drove into church on a Sunday and I said to him, “Look Hudson, is this Daddy’s church?” And he looks at me like I was so silly and he says in his most important voice. “No Daddy, this not Daddy’s church. This Hudson’s church. This Hudson’s church. Mine”. And with that he ran into the church, into my office, and climbed into my desk chair.

But here’s the thing – he’s right. The church isn’t mine. I belong to it, but so does he. The church is a people we belong to. And Hudson belongs to this family just as much as I do. So when he says, “No Daddy, it’s Hudson’s church” he is right because in his little mind he is trying to tell me this is part of his life too. Hudson is right, this is his church, and it belongs to everyone who decides to follow Jesus with this community. So as a dad, a pastor, but mostly as a Christian I couldn’t be more excited that Hudson has realized this is his church too. Hudson has made the shift from going to church, to believing he is a part of it.

For you though do you feel the same sense of ownership, partnership and belonging in your church? Because I think we should. In whatever church we are a part of we should be proud like Hudson to say, “this is my church.”

Now of course it could be that he just love’s the Mater toy that’s there. As a dad, but even more as a Christian, I have to believe something deeper is going on.  I believe he said “No Daddy, it’s Hudson’s church” because he knows he belongs here. And you know what – he’s right…