Sunday, December 13, 2009

If you only take the time.

How often do we jet through our days without hardly a pause? Tasks call to us with urgent pleas. Families "need" our attention now! How much do we miss because we are constantly on the run? My guess is we miss a lot.

These days my time is spent fixing meals, encouraging friends, tending my garden, doing daily chores and volunteering. The other thing I do is listen to my husband as he downloads the details from his work day and or how he plans to tackle his next project. I call this sharing "ruminating" and he is "The Great Ruminator". Okay, I need to stop calling him that, but its what I've been calling him because his habit is to share in everything in great detail. Now 99% of this information will I never use and probably 75% I don't really understand. And why do I even bring this up? Because he seems to for whatever reason have a great need to share it with me.

This man is my life partner and I know it would be the loving thing to do to take the time to listen intently, if only to encourage him. This is harder to do than it sounds as he's around most all the time and he is not inclined to share the Reader's Digest version. His preference is the Encyclopedic version with every smidgen of detail spoken as he thinks through the necessary process of these jobs verbally. Don't get me wrong. I love that my husband is so detail oriented. I love that he can fix anything and that others are blessed by this talent he has, but my brain wants to implode sometimes from the vast quantity of it all. And I can hear you asking what does this have to do with my topic. Well I'm getting to that in just a minute but first lets go out to my garden.

I mentioned in my profile I've discovered the coolness of digital here's what I captured this morning after some light freezing rain overnight. The pictures I posted here are a rock in our birdbath with ice creating a pattern on it and the curry plant with frozen rain droplets. I almost missed seeing the way the ice beaded up on the felt covered leaves of this plant!!! I'm sure no one walking by on the sidewalk near where the plant is noticed. You had to stop to see it.

Because I've had an interest in plants and taken the time to study them I've been very aware that plants are really cool! They are made so incredibly; the veining, the roots, the flower stamens and pistils, the seeds, the hairs on the leaves, bark, berries...not to mention their colors, textures and fragrances. But most people never get to see these amazing things because they are always whizzing by too fast to take notice as what they are heading off to do is more important or something they understand better than plants.

Now the connection...because people don't see plants/gardens as important or understand them, they pass on by without even a glance. For me that is how I have been responding to these daily downloads my husband shares with me, his wife, his help meet and not always very graciously too I might add. It gives me pause to wonder what I've missed. What was in all those words he spoke that I waved away dismissively or because I thought I had something oh so important to do? Did I lose an even more important opportunity to encourage him, to respect him and to love him or even to help him in avoiding a possible problem. Yes, yes, yes, to all! (ugh)

As you scurry about this Christmas season I pray you will be able to quiet your life enough to not miss those amazing little moments that God is handing you. That your tasks at hand will not overshadow the really important things around your...and the amazing things God wants to bless you with. Those moments that tell someone you truly love them and that will warm your heart more than the giving of any other present given.

Have a very Merry Christmas Season


  1. Good writing! I love the way you use the garden as the metaphor. We, all of us, are a special vineyard with someone special in attendance. Why, because I believe God is fascinated with how we churn out truth for ourselves on a daily basis as intentional meaning-makers. It is a necessary experience to listen to someone verbally process, trying to distill meaning from events and thoughts. How much more Zen-like if we enter in to it as a dialog, co-creating new meanings from the chaos around us? Good piece!

    Holly Maxim
    Olympia, WA

  2. Hi Patty,
    I enjoyed your sharing very much! And to think I almost said, "I'm too busy right now, maybe I should just flag the email and read it later..." (hah! "Later" often fades into "oops, I forgot!") So, good thing I did visit your blog - what a delight! I could picture you giggling with glee as you bent over the curry plant and birdbath with your camera! Your ruminations on Loving thru Listening spoke deeply and kindly to my soul. Thank you for your wise insights, dear friend. Lotsa love, Kathy