It is Sunday morning, and my mind is wandering a bit, as it often does, to the day before. Saturday. To the day of loving my family. To the worship that was easy. To the almost-evening question from the one who still smiles his smile at me, do you want to go for a drive? I’m going out for a bit. And it’s easy to answer yes, and to grab camera and book and blanket and dog, and to hop in the truck, and to marvel as we drive at the beauty of the autumn-dressed prairie. And to watch him walk toward the creek with bow in hand, and to gaze across the field and just let it all sink in. And to snuggle under my warm blanket and read Anne Lamott’s words and cuddle my dog on my lap, and just breathe it all in.

The easy worship.

But that was yesterday. Today is Sunday, the day ordained for worship. The do not neglect the gathering of the saints day. Church day.

After a small, precious, alone-in-the-house kind of time, quiet and peaceful, I will wake up the noisy crowd. And they will eat and shower and dress, and I’ll send at least one back upstairs to change into something that doesn’t have holes in it and whoever he is will complain that it’s church, mom, it’s not a fashion show. And I’ll reply that I agree, but I know there is something in your closet that is hole-free and that is what I would like you to wear today.

And there may be shrugs or eye roles, but whoever he is will do as he is asked because my boys are, basically, good sons.

And I will treasure the hugs from the son who hugs easy, and seek the hugs from the ones who don’t. And my husband will make coffee from freshly ground coffee beans. And then we will tumble into the car, hurry, hurry, and go to church.

When I was little, people didn’t say they were going to church. They said they were going to services, or they were going to meeting. Because the word church, as I heard in many a sermon, means “the people” and is not “a place”. So it is not somewhere you can go. But I am rebellious so now I say I am going to church, even though something in me always corrects myself, reminding me that I am not using the word correctly. We were very big on doing things correctly when I was little.

So we will go to church. And worship. At least we will try to. We will offer our worship to God, holy and acceptable and pleasing to Him. With songs and prayers and sermons and Sunday School.

And it seems like so little and so much at the same time, this institutional, congregational, group worship that we do each Sunday.

The not-so-easy worship.