Monday, November 28, 2016

Talking and Listening

Mom and Dad were working down in the basement. Their daughter was taking a nap on the couch, only a few steps from the basement stairs.  Work in the basement had been put off for some time and now the little girl's parents were doing some much needed cleaning and arranging of stored boxes.

So begins a story I read recently.  Some might criticize the parents of the 5 year-old girl for leaving her unattended, but that was not the case.  They made frequent trips up the steps to check on their sleeping daughter. If she needed them, they were mere seconds away. 

As the work progressed, the mother heard her daughter stirring and waking from her nap as the girl realized her parents were nowhere to be found.  She let out a loud plea for "Mommy!"  When the mother tried to answer, her voice was covered by the immediate second call from the daughter, a louder cry of "Mommy...Daddy!"  Now both parents were responding with calls out to the little girl and both were ascending up the stairs to assure their daughter everything was all right.  Then this father realized what was happening.  The girl was crying out to them and they were answering her cries at the same time.  By now the daughter was screaming for the parents and the parents were screaming for the the same time.  No real communication could happen as all parties were becoming increasingly vocal and each could not hear the other because they were now yelling for each other at the same time. The story has as good ending because the parents emerged from the  basement stairs and the young daughter could see them and immediately know she was safe.

I can see how a story like this could play out in lots of families.  In this part of the story I can also imagine how real the fear would be for the young child. Similar incidents may have happened with you and your children.  The story is also a message and a learning experience for me.

This story made me wonder about my prayers to God when I cry out  to him because of some fear or problem.  In my anxious moments I continue to repeat my needs in prayer and suddenly feel God is working too slow for me.  Maybe, just maybe, I fail to see God's answer and solution because I do not pause a moment to listen for him. Am I the only one that has failed to see and hear God's solution because of my unwillingness to wait for his answer?  Am I doing all the talking and not doing any listening?  Do my loud and repeated requests drown out the answers and solutions God is already sending?

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