I tend to be a punctual person.  If something starts at 10am, I am there at 9:45.  I strongly and fervently dislike being late.  As a result, my philosophy is that if I’m always early, I’ll never be late.

Have I mentioned that I tend to be punctual.

I had a good friend in college who was the opposite.  He was always late.  You were supposed to meet at 12pm for lunch, he’d show up at 12:20pm, maybe.  It drove me NUTS.

Even today, with 4-kids in tow, I still strive to be early – and usually achieve that goal. Especially for church functions.

Come Sunday morning, I am determined to get to church on-time, at all costs. Recently, I have recognized that the ‘at all costs” is far too great.  My desire for punctuality can rise to the level of idolatry if I am not careful.

There have been days when my desire to get to church on time has led me to be impatient with my children.  In my impatience, I have at times been harsh and unkind.  I have exalted punctuality over civility, thus perverting true godly character.  In my over-zealous desire to be punctual, I have forfeited the greater joy of patiently, lovingly, leading my children.

So, next time we are cutting it close, next time it seems we may not quite make it on time, I am prayerful that I will respond with graciousness.  I am prayerful that I will be able to laugh at the last minute diaper explosion, or the lost shoe, or the temper tantrum.  I am prayerful that I will remember that God has ordained even those delays, and is giving me a chance to grow in grace and godly character.