My dad is an amazing listener.
He had to be, raising two daughters.
My mom, my sister, and I all like to talk to him. A lot. It never ceases to amaze Jason how my dad can tolerate all three of us talking to him at the same time without losing his mind. But that’s the kind of guy he is.
Sometimes I think I can do that kind of listening.
So I listen to the TV. And the blogs I follow. And my children. And the radio. And my pastor. And the books and magazines I read. And my husband. And my own heart.
But it doesn’t work out so well for me, because sometimes they’re saying opposite things.
For example, some blogs suggest wearing your shoes all day around the house, because it will help you be more productive. However, ask Martha Stewart, and she’ll tell you not to ever ever EVER wear shoes in your house because it’s bad for your floor.
Here’s another for instance: CFL light bulbs conserve a huge amount of energy when compared to standard incandescent bulbs. So much so, that incandescent bulbs won’t be available in the US for much longer. But I just read yesterday that they may emit some potentially harmful chemicals, and if they break, are extremely toxic. How am I supposed to know what’s the greenest lightbulb choice for my home?
Or consider this: Stacy London, on what not to wear, seems to think that going to WalMart without being dressed to the nines is a crime. And a lot of the blogs I read talk about how dressing in a way that makes you feel pretty is a gift to yourself, and to your husband. And mostly I agree. But some days I have to change clothes three times because Garrett spit up all over me, or Caleb smeared food on my sleeve. And by the third time, I’m not really up to the task of picking a pretty and presentable outfit. And sometimes my heart just wants me to be in sweatpants.
A girl could go crazy trying to listen to and please all of those voices. At least this girl could.
So I’m doing my best to remember to listen most attentively to the voice that’s most important.
Psalm 119, one of my favorite chapters in the Bible, is a long acrostic celebrating the wonder of God’s word. It’s slated for next week on our iDiscipleship reading with the youth, but I wanted time to really mull it over and read it several times, so I’ve started working my way through it this week.
It’s full of phrases like: “My eyes stay open through the watches of the night that I may meditate on your promises” (vs. 148) and: “Your decrees are the theme of my song wherever I lodge” (vs. 54). Beautiful pictures of making God’s word the number one priority in your life.
That’s the voice I want to listen to.
I probably won’t stop reading magazines or blogs. And I definitely will not stop listening to my husband or my kids or even myself. But I will try to remember that none of those things carry the strength or the truth of God’s word.
I have to believe that. If I don’t, there’s nothing else for me.
Like Peter said, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.” (John 6:68)