Have you ever been truckin' along, in that "do the next thing that is screaming to be done" mode, and then something really get your attention?
Last Sunday in the midst of sharing an experience, our pastor said something that keeps popping up in my thoughts. He was explaining that he was with a group and they were hiking along a river. The water was loud and he was bringing up the rear. The guide gave instructions, but he didn't hear them. Then he said, "I didn't intentionally disobey-I wouldn't have done that. But I didn't hear. I just wasn't listening."
Ouch. This resonates with me. I wouldn't intentionally disobey. I just wasn't listening.
I LOVE quiet. I love early morning, the sunrise that I feel like God gives just to me each morning. (Egocentric, I know.) Our family is quiet. We don't yell or scream or really even talk loud. I used to unnerve Clay and Jennie's friends because they wouldn't hear me coming and then they would notice I was in the room with them. (heh, sneaky!) Yet, my life feels loud. These words by Ann Voskamp jump off the page as I read them, "The world I live in is loud and blurring and toilets plug and I get speeding tickets and the dog gets sick all over the back step and I forget everything and these six kids lean hard into me all day to teach and raise and lead and I fail hard and there are real souls that are at stake and how long do I really have to figure out how to live full of grace, full of joy--before these six beautiful children fly the coop and my mothering days fold up quiet? How do you open the eyes to see how to take the daily, domestic, workday vortex and invert it into the dome of an everyday cathedral?"
Pondering this for the last several days I have been reminded of a parenting principle I learned when my kids were little. Often, as I spoke to them it might appear that they were just not obeying. In the middle of a game or project they were distracted. They might even acknowledge that they heard me, still no response to the instruction being given. However, I could call their name, say "Look at me," and get them to look in my eyes. I would then repeat my instructions and off they would go, happily carrying out my request.
So, on my "read this everyday until I die and maybe it will soak in" list, this is what I want to add.
Sit with Jesus. Seek His face. See the gifts he pours out on me. Thanking him continually for everyday grace. Stay there until the chaos stills, and the loud quiets. Listen.