March 29, 2023

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How To Avoid Sleeping In Church

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1. Read the weekly lessons
Have you ever been in a Sunday School class where the teacher asked for a show of hands from those who read the lesson? It has happened to me several times, and in every circumstance, the raised hands were pretty sparse. Abysmally so, in fact.

Every time I have read the lesson before class, I have more fully enjoyed the discussion and am much more likely to contribute something meaningful to it. And yet, I fully admit that I don’t do this as often as I should.

We should read our lessons in advance. It doesn’t take long and the small time investment we make during the week will make a huge difference in our Sunday learning.

2. Get a good night’s rest
Remember that old primary song? “Saturday is a special day . . .”? Part of getting ready for Sunday involves getting a good sleep the night before. And while this might sound like a pretty basic tip, I can’t tell you how many times I or others I know have been sleep deprived going into their meetings on Sunday, and that can often mean sleeping through those meetings.

There are exceptions to this rule–being up with a sick kid or a hungry baby is understandable. But if you can help it, try to get a good night’s sleep.

3. Stay off your phone
This one is tough. In the age of smartphones, it is super tempting to send a quick text (or three or four) or to check Facebook between (during) meetings. Admittedly, I love the technology that allows us to access our scriptures and manuals through a handheld device, and I support those who use their phones for this purpose. But it is a slippery slope, my friends. Playing a quick game or checking football scores during church might keep us “awake” in body but will disconnect us from the lesson or talk.

Don’t let your phone check you out during church.

4. Reach out
It’s really easy to be consumed by our own needs. Or to get frustrated because attending church didn’t give you whatever you needed that day. Maybe we would all benefit from stepping outside of ourselves and making church about more than ourselves. Sit next to someone new, strike up a conversation, make a comment when no one is raising their hand, see a need and strive to help.

Make a concerted effort to serve someone else during meetings and attend church with more than yourself in mind.

5. Spiritually prepare
This is where the Sunday School answers come in: pray and read your scriptures. When we prepare spiritually for Sunday, the quality of the teacher will not matter, and the eloquence of the speaker will not be a factor.

If we are prepared and seek guidance in preparation for our meetings, we will be taught.

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