It’s been nearly a month since I have written.
Yes, I have been busy. The boys were finishing the school year, the dog sitting business is busy and my husband’s business is ever demanding. And to top it off, we did a major remodel in our home.
But there’s yet another problem. I have nothing to say. Well, nothing that isn’t already being said over and over again.
Does anyone say anything anymore that is worth hearing? Who is the voice of reason above all the noise? How do we clear out all the clutter and let our minds rest? Where is the reprieve from it all???
And when in the world do we listen?
I reposted this from Jen Hatmaker on my FB page:
And I love it. And because of it, I have reached out to my gay friends to let them know I love them, that I am thinking about them, and grieving with them.
But there is more we can do. We. Can. Listen.
I want to yell SHUT UP so loud that my own eardrums shake. I want to become hoarse from the anger behind it. I want to show my disgust. And then I want to fast from speaking and opining and sit in monk silence listening to the hearts of men.
And at the very moment that I open my mouth to form the words, tongue on my teeth, I want to shut up again and listen.
I want to listen so hard that the speaker in my presence runs out of grief and feels so understood that they see me as family from this point forward. Instead of connecting through spouting and shouting, I want to connect in silent reverence never before seen in our generation.
And then I want to fast from speaking and opining and sit in monk silence listening to the hearts of men.
I want to disregard everything that labels who we are and learn the story of each person and understand their hearts and pray for their souls, not because I deem them sinners, but because I deem them worthy of my time and affection.
I want to see them with new eyes and hear them with new ears. I want to love them in spite of them. I want to love them in spite of myself.
Before I wrote this, I prayed to God to give me words if He wanted me to use them and to give me silence if He wanted me to be quiet.
Speak up in righteous anger, speak up in love, speak up in hope of a better world. But don’t be afraid to shut up sometimes. We learn not from hearing ourselves speak but from listening.
And when have you felt the most loved? When someone spoke to you, or when someone just listened? And they heard you, and you could feel it in your soul?
I pray that I no longer contribute to a listening-deprived world. I pray to grow in my listening skills, to be slow to anger and slow to speak. I pray to seek to understand above seeking to be heard. I pray to be a flame for peace instead of a spark of rage. I pray to love earnestly and without condition. I pray to speak up for the wounded and grieve with the grieving. I pray to be a physical presence in the lives of those in need and not just a virtual mouthpiece stroking my own ego and feeding an ever-famished pit of anger that would rule me if I allowed it.
I pray to listen. Because in the silence and in the stillness, love grows wild.