Pay Attention

We spend such a vast amount of time waiting. Now that I am a mother I realize that it's imperative that I learn to wait well. Just this morning I froze between holding a scooter and rinsing a rag to wait while my five-year-old buttoned her sweater. Frustrations began to creep in but instead of sighing with impatience (the typical me behavior) the sweet thought occurred to me, "Look at her beautiful hair." Her morning-matted golden hair pin-striped with every possible shade of brown was soft enough to touch if I'd had a free hand. Jesus, whispering with His still small voice, would have me take in these moments like a slow inhale that takes in a delicious scent. I not only looked at her hair, I gazed at it. The next thing I knew she was done with her task and ready to get back on her scooter for another ride. I was released to continue my cleaning with that moment tucked away in my heart.

"With the Lord a day is like a thousand years..." 2 Peter 3:8
If I trusted God more maybe I would lose myself in those moments more often. Instead I trust the clock, my cell phone alarm, my to-do list, and my insufficient memory. Sometimes I will even tell people to remind me of things because just the act of delegating my memory helps it work better. How can I possibly breathe my children and my husband in when the hammering second hand beats me over the head with time? Time, the futile battle with sunset that we never win. And yet God has all the time in the world at His disposal. 86,400 seconds that He can turn into a thousand years whenever He chooses. That's 525,600,000 of His minutes that He can pack into our 24 hours. Just think of all we could experience in just one of God's days! He's got all the time in the world, literally.

"The sun stopped in the middle of the sky and delayed going down about a full day." Joshua 10:13
Josh got a whole extra day!? By the way, now we know the science that the Earth stopped, not the sun. God just put on the brakes, baby, cuz that's how He rolls. So what makes me think that He wouldn't supply me with more than enough time to trust Him and get important stuff done? But I fear the ever-dreadful question, "What did you get done today?" At four o'clock when it's crunch time around here, the sun makes it's way to the back of the house and I start to look for evidence of something accomplished. What will I have to show for this day when my husband comes home? Only God knows.

"...and a thousand years are like a day." 2 Peter 3:8b
God is infinitely efficient. He can get a thousand years worth of work done in one day, piece of cake. If I trust Him maybe I can catch up on my Spring cleaning during these last two weeks of Spring. Two weeks could equal a whole season! He can definitely make it happen. But His priorities may be different than mine. I best get in line with His. For example, instead of getting in the shower and starting laundry I had another Jesus moment happen on my couch. I got the brilliant (see: Jesus) idea that I should equip the kids for conflict resolution instead of plugging my ears to their arguing and whining. So I made up a kid-friendly version of healthy confrontation. Want to hear it? Here it goes: It's a sandwich. The first piece of bread is the positive observation. You say something you like about your 3-year-old brother like, "I LIKE that you are super cute, buddy." The inside of the sandwich is the thing that bugs you, "BUT, when you make that annoying sound it really bothers me." Slap the last piece of bread on the sandwich by giving a couple of positive options. "MAYBE you can sing a song or go upstairs and make noise." If you are really ambitious you can tag another positive thing on top like a toothpick that holds it all together. Easy peasy lemon squeezy, as my kids say (thank you Veggietales!). I LIKE, BUT, MAYBE. The empowerment my kids felt just learning tools to get along has helped them to play sweetly while I write this blog. Win, win! Thank You Jesus for Your excellent use of time.

Summer and winter, and springtime and harvest,
Sun, moon and stars in their courses above,

Join with all nature in manifold witness
To Thy great faithfulness, mercy and love. 
( from "Great is Thy Faithfulness" by Thomas Chisolm 1866-1960)
God is worthy of our trust and our lives because every breath belongs to Him. Lord Jesus, take my moments. Fill them with Your richness and a thousand years' worth of Your presence. Show me all the details I missed while I was staring at the second-hand in my head. Please redeem the lost moments by doubling the blessings of these present ones. Hold my hand and engulf me in Your arms when I must pay attention to painful moments. Change my eyes, my ears, and my focus to experience You in everything. By doing this You will help me wait well. I know now that those times of waiting are gifts that I've been reluctant to receive. I can see so much when I'm waiting. I can pay attention to so much more when I slow down.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...


All through your life you have been insightful. This bit on waiting I definitely support with a grand Amen! There are times when we are gifted with such times. To make housework or any kind of busywork more important than our children is in error! Repeat those moments over and over again and store them up for those times when your children tax you. Keep perspective. Keep those love moments handy to fuel your patience. And yes, listen to our Creator always.

I love you,