The Sound of Gratitude


It wasn’t what I thought it would be – my project to turn off the entertainment and to listen. I expected poetry at every turn. I honestly expected to hear Isaac’s view of God, to take in the sound of Ian’s giggle, and to hear Jude use more words to express his needs.
Instead, I just got dirty. Instead of profound child-like faith, the only thing I heard was that when I make funny faces, I look like the “Witches’ Chipmunks of the South,” and I do not know what that means, and Yes, that is a sort of poetry, and Yes, that sort of crazy imagination is why the best in my family have tended to to have loosened screws at an earlier age. 
Listening is a dirty business, and I found out that I love (LOVE) to drown out a lot of truth in my life. When I listened, I found out that the boys didn’t really want to talk as much. They needed a break from the noise, too, and so much of our day was sitting quietly – not for anything profound but for the sound of birds singing and rocks in a pitcher of water. We just needed to be quiet. There was MUCH less whining and complaining and yelling for attention. I think I found out that much of what they say is to make themselves feel like I’m present. When they were confident of my presence, their wants were much more easily satisfied, and they accepted peace. Think about what that means in regard to our relationship with God. 
At the end of the day, I was watching YouTube, and the boys sat sucking their thumbs for Return of the Jedi. I haven’t mustered the energy to deal with what I was really hearing. I think I turn up the noise when I don’t want to deal with my sin or fear or my contentment issues, and I often do not trust God to deal gently with me (I’m figuring this out as I’m typing). I imagine my ugliness revealed in one hard drop of the hammer, so I get on Pandora and dance in the kitchen and blend up a smoothie and call my friends, and I tell everyone here to hold on one more little minute so I can just … 
not deal. 
Okay, so Project Listen obviously continues. I can learn from my boys the sound of gratitude. Papa is present. Practice this: Quietness and the joy being with Him.

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amberhaines
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3 Comments

Megan
Reply June 18, 2008

that's beautiful. we lost the remote for the whole day earlier this week. i can't tell you how nicely our time passed.

thank you for the reminder that we are distracting ourselves from more than our lives and families, but from our very Savior.

(p.s. hope we can run into each other at stacey's again soon, especially when i have more than five minutes to stick around)

KristinG
Reply June 18, 2008

Wow. Amber. That is so true and why my children are much louder when I am (distracted) on the phone with the beaters going. . . er, not dealing as you put it. Thank you for your project, I might be brave enough to give it a go. :) Kristin

karalaney
Reply June 18, 2008

i am thinking and praying for you tonight my dear friend.

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