Thursday, January 27, 2011

Can You Hear Me Now?

Our church has been in a season of fasting and prayer during the month of January. Normally, I don't talk to many folks about our fasting decisions, as they are really individual per person and per family. But most of you who come by here regularly know that one of the things that is regularly on my heart and in my "sights" spiritually is the plan and vision that God may have for the next season of This Gang's life. This year, our fast is no different.

The Boss and I have been praying for clarity regarding our home's vision and mission. Specifically, we've been praying about things that can make us more like Christ first within the walls of our home and then to the others that we encounter in our daily lives.  We've also been praying about our next adoption. It's never far from my heart or my mind, the deep-seated knowing that there's a little girl on God's heart that will be just the right addition to this big, loud, crazy Gang. I think about it all the time, really. I pray about it, I talk with the kids about it, I read all I can get my hands on regarding adoption and special needs. And I try to listen. To the Lord. To my husband. To the kids. To those who have traveled the journey before us, both in adoption and in life. The listening is hard for me. (yes, snicker away, go ahead... okay, composed and ready to resume? Good. Let's move on.)

The listening is hard for me for many reasons.  But in the last week or so, as I've been contemplating the ways in which we need to tighten up our home environment to provide a good listening environment for Li'l Empress, I've been struck by just how important it is that we be creating a good listening environment for The Gang. So that we can listen to The Lord.

Yeah. Let that one sink in with ya a bit.

I've been struck more strongly in the last week by just how hard it is to create and maintain a good spiritual listening environment in a busy home like ours.  In this culture of ours.  We do like our background noise, don't we? Radio on in the car. Morning news blaring in the background. Fancy ring tones for calls and different ones for texts. Songs stuck in our heads, leaking out our mouths (no matter how badly sung!) from this morning's radio alarm. Cell phones permanently attached to our fingertips for constant access to incoming texts. Immediate answers back to said texts. Laptops open in every room. Multiple tv's to avoid the noise of dissension over channel choice. Come on now, I know that it isn't just The Gang's Headquarters that sounds like this. You probably got some noise goin' on in your house, too. Don't ya?

Hearing lots but not really listening to anything.

Really. We can't handle the quiet can we?  And as the old saying goes, when I'm stepping on your toes, I'm bruising the bottoms of my own feet as I tromp. (Or something like that, anyway... I swear, I heard it somewhere.)

I was struck Wednesday afternoon by the utter silence and still in my home for all of 30 minutes or so. The Boss and Dr. D were at the gym (no doubt with iPods blaring in their ears to drown out the noise of the gym tv's!). Shaggy was in his room working on a school project. Li'l Empress was sleeping. And LadyBug and Baby BlueEyes were playing in the snow at their cousins'. I was alone (GOSH, that felt so weird in itself!). And IT. WAS. QUIET.  Just me and my book. Oh, and my Tigger mug o' tea, of course.

In that quiet moment, I realized that I could hear the snow falling outside the window.

I could hear my cat snoring.

I could hear.

I could hear.

I'm coming to the end of this season of fasting and prayer with a new-to-me revelation of my spiritual listening environment. It needs to be a lot quieter, a lot more often. It needs to be peaceful. It needs to be free of spiritual clutter. And purged of the white noise of my life. I need to hear Him. But in the hearing, I need to listen.

So when HE asks me, "Can you hear me now?" I can say, "YES, LORD! I hear YOU. And I'm LISTENING."


Faith, Hope, and Love said...

Love this! Sooooo true!!!!

I can't wait to hear that you are bringing home another blessing!

Shhh....listen..... :)

Love and blessings,

Aus said...

Morning GM - I spent 7 years as a Franciscan prior to leaving and starting into my lay life in 1980....and in the beginning I really believed that being a Franciscan was all about the 3 S's - Service, Suffering, and Sacrifice. I really believed that if I lived that I could make a difference to all the communitites in which I walked....

Then one day I sat down with a Brother of mine (much older and LR and I really had a Father-Son kind of relationship by the time he passed on...) He looked at me one day and said "Aus - I get the 3 S's - but you need to get this, the 3 S's are Sleep, Solitude, and Silence." He went on with that for a while but it all wrapped up with this - if you are being soooo busy and bothered by your life - then you won't be able to hear the call....shut up and listen....

good insight - and true words!

hugs - aus and co.

Darcy said...

Hi there! I have been meaning to email you to see if you have any good resources you have found regarding parenting and raising a hearing impaired child. I loved this post! Due to the fact that Ryan functions so well with his BAHA and is developmentally functioning above his peers, we sometimes "forget" that he DOES have a hearing impairment. We do struggle in some areas at home and I do need to make some changes. Just wanted to see if you had found any good resources. Thanks so much!