“The voice within you is the loudest voice of which I speak, because it is the closest to you. . . It is the radar that sets the course, steers the ship, guides the journey if you but let it. It is the voice which tells you right now whether the very words you are reading are words of love or words of fear. By this measure can you determine whether they are words to heed or words to ignore.” – Neale Walsch
Love and fear. I was struck by this book section this week. I guess I was struck by a lot of things this week; maybe you were too.
The author goes on to write that all things have either an undercurrent of love or one of fear. Either/or type of thinking isn’t always my cup of tea, but this idea helps me. This week I wanted to quit Facebook, and I felt magnetically drawn to it, so much love, so much fear. Headlines framed the same events in polar opposite directions, almost shouting, making it hard to listen and understand toward actions that matter.
So when you don’t know what to do, I guess you look around for something to do. My car floor was filled with winter debris, and it looked halfway warm outside, so I set to work. As I vacuumed out my car with an old Bob Seger CD blasting through doors open, the unexpected Nebraska sun warmed my skin. I looked up thankful for my cooped-up kiddos getting to play outside, but still felt up and down toward the larger shifts going on beyond my small-town L-shaped drive.
Something about vacuuming the car feels like living thanks even when things seem all over the place. It wasn’t special or grand, but it was something good to do.
So what’s the good that needs doing this week? And not just chores stuff, but real stuff that matters to other people. Maybe you have a way of greeting people heartily. Maybe you can bring a laugh to tense meetings. Maybe you make some serious Monster cookies. Maybe you can sit in rooms filled with pain, rooms that would cause many to run. Maybe you get your kids ready in the morning and somehow always find a way to shift their sleepy whines to smiles. Maybe you make music. Maybe you offer a devotion to get your team at work started with an intentionally different tune. Maybe you organize people for causes that matter or make art that brings people together. Maybe you share e-mails to friends that lighten their days and their hearts.
Whatever the good is, make it this week. If you’re not sure how or what might help, go a little slower to listen, get quiet and create some margin, even if it’s just five silent minutes at lunch. It’s hard to hear with the current. We can’t just hope it’ll stop. We must physically paddle to the shore and make a quiet space to listen for the Still Small Voice. It is always there, quietly whispering love under the noise, waiting patiently, speaking truth to fear in the most creative and unexpected ways. What might it be saying to you today in this time, in this place?
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