Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Being aware, being students

There's this real gem of a book out that you might be aware of. It's called The Five Love Languages and it's by Gary Chapman. I believe there is one to use with your children, one with your teens, and even one for singles coming out, which could be used in the Church Body or for any relationship, it sounds like. These books are really nothing new, it is the way God loves and sees us, but it is so revolutionary and needed for us sinful humans who need help being intimate and having healthy relationships with everyone in our lives.
In an old book from 1920 I found in an antique store titled: Talks to Mothers, in the chapter called "The Thoughtful Mother", it says:

"Child study is a new study. It belongs to our age. There are many ways of studying children. There is the scientific way of the university. There is the way of the teacher who tests and measures the growth of her pupils. And there is the way of the mother who keeps all these things and ponders them in her heart. "

Barbara Curtis of  Mommy Life says in her book: Lord, Meet Me In The Laundry Room:
"When you're "just a mommy", you have time to watch and wait and pray. It takes a lot of observation of your children to know who they truly are, and it takes a lot of thought and prayer---to hear the still small voice that speaks to you about each one."

I have to agree. Studying our children is an art that takes careful thought and mindful awareness. It takes cutting out the mental clutter in our head to focus on the thought at hand.

I'm going to go one step further and suggest that this awareness should spill over (or more like it-- start) with the Lord and our husbands. It is so common in our world with all the distractions like TV, radio, computer, cell phones, ipods, etc. --information overload--to ignore the signs and promptings of the Holy Spirit. Often this could also be us hearing but refusing to listen to Him. We must try to be students of all God's people, not just our children. How do we do that? What makes someone respond? Is it words of encouragement? Serving? How do they show love to you?  Then to speak their love language,  you do their love language to them. Make sense? It works in all relationships. Wouldn't it be wonderful if we all were mindful in that way with each other? God seeks to understand us so we should seek to understand others.


TAMI said...

Loved the 1920s quote. Thanks for reminding us to have eyes that see and ears that hear everywhere!

Susan @ HeartPondering said...

I love this post and its content, and I especially love the quote from the "Talks to Mothers" book that you included. Her line there, "And there is the way of the mother who keeps all these things and ponders them in her heart" is exactly what I was going for when I kicked off my "heartpondering" blog to ponder motherhood (and, more specifically, to encourage myself and other moms to reflect on the process and study our own kids!)
Thank you for this.

Christine said...

So true, and the more children you have the more you see that knowing one has absolutely nothing to do with knowing the others! I am constantly tweaking the way I handle each situation with each child praying I'm getting close to "understanding" them as God does. Adding hubby in there is a good idea! Reminds me of Fireproof when they talk about earning a "doctorate" in your spouse.

Stacy said...

I remember one day I was driving around, listening to a CD, and earnestly asking God to speak to me about something.

All of a sudden I had the thought, "Goodness, Stacy. Maybe if you TURNED OFF THE NOISE you might actually HEAR Him when He does speak!" It was a very "aha" moment for me, and it began a period of "turning off the noise"-- a couple of years of no TV, little music (but worship), and lots of pressing in by way of prayer.

Love to you, Andrea. I so appreciate your thoughts in this place.