I have this problem. Well, my husband sees it as a problem...I see it more as a strength but... it can be a problem.
I put myself in whatever book, movie or TV show I happen to be watching. Hence, I may get a little too attached to the characters.
So when my mother-in-law and sister-in-law introduced me to Heartland. I immediately decided the spunky, talented and beautiful protagonist Amy could be my alter ego for the show. Amy has an incredible gift of listening to horses and understanding what they need to be trained properly.
The show is really very wholesome (it is Canadian after all). And I just love to watch myself....I mean Amy.... work with the horses. I love how she gets a random idea and tries it.
I love how she listens.
I want to listen like that. The thing is, I have no horses.
I do however, have small children.
So what would it be like if I really listened to my kids?
1. Amy pays attention to everything. The smells that calm the horses, the food they like, the places they like to spend time. She notices details. A lot of the scenes are just her putting her hand on the horses neck or back. (This may be why some family members aren’t as huge fans of the show as I am:)
~Do I listen to my kids this way? Do I give them hugs, do I let them sit on my lap? (even though it feels like I’m being smothered to death)
~Do I listen to my husband at all? I know he loves lemon chicken but I HATE making it, so I usually don’t. (FAIL.)
~ Do I set aside time to just be? To listen to God. Not to laundry list pray about all my worries but to hear God?
2. Amy’s process is not linear. It takes time. She doesn’t rush or try to make the horse into something it is not. She has to come up with tons of different ideas for each unique horse.
~ Am I willing to SLOW DOWN? Ann Voskamp says, “Hurry hurts kids” and I find that so convicting because “hurry” is my default speed.
~Am I willing to make a point to spend time with my husband? Not time with an agenda where I barrage him with the info from the day that I have to pass along. Time simply together.
~ Am I willing to read the Bible slowly? Not just get it done because it makes me feel better to know I did something “good” today (amidst all my failures) but to soak it in.
I may never be a horse whisperer in real life... but I truly desire to become a better listener...and learn how to rock the heck out of cowboy boots.