So on this ‘Thankful Thursday’ I’m thankful for words.
I’m thankful for words spoken that bring clarity. It’s amazing the power of words to clear the air and wash away misunderstandings when all parties have taken a deep breath before hand.
Sometimes, that’s a crucial piece (for peace)—this breathing in and breathing out.
Somehow, deep breaths seem to open up the ability to listen and hear a bit more. And I’m thinking that good conversation is just that…it’s a breathing out your thoughts in words, and a breathing in of another’s thoughts and words. Good conversations, well, they can’t be a one sided breathing out of this or that and never taking in. Nope, good communication needs to be reciprocal—a giving and a taking, contributing and receiving–breathing in and breathing out.
I saw it in a good conversation played out today with some very vested parents of a student…and it made me appreciate that deep breaths can bring us all to a better place. This stepping back to get perspective is a good thing…whether we’re speaking with 5 year old, or business partners, or professionals, spouses or family members–breathing in and out–giving and receiving– can lead to clear air and better understandings. Even without agreeing, respect can bridge the communication gaps. Taking a deep breath, (as opposed to a ‘huffy breath’ as Junie B. Jones called it) can make all the difference in where words lead us.
So, I’m thankful for communication– a give or take of words. I’m also thankful for —the benefits of a lack of communication. Wait, what? Yep. I am. Because sometimes, well, sometimes there are benefits of this lack of a give and take of words. There’s think time–time to process what has or hasn’t been said, has or hasn’t been done. Think time is a good thing as long as the thoughts are leading to a better mindset rather than a worse. Yes, a lack of communication can help me to have deeper ‘conversations’ with myself. It’s good to reflect. Quiet—that rare commodity of a lack of noise and sound and distractions–well, quiet can have a lot of benefits that turn the mirror inward in a healthy way. Reflection is a good thing.
And last, I’m thankful for the way a lack of communication of things that might need to work through can increase my communication with the One who I need to be talking with the most. Prayer is key. It’s where the power is. I can work myself into a tizzy trying to make crooked ways straight. I can talk till I’m blue in the face and not make sense to anybody. (And I’m quite sure I have many a time…maybe not blue…but if I was doing all the talking, well surely there was a lack of this metaphorical oxygen!) God can change in a heartbeat what I can’t impact in a lifetime of words. But He calls us to ask…to call upon Him…to breathe out our hearts to Him and He breathes back His life into us. I love that. God calls us to a relationship…a reciprocal breathing out and breathing in. The One who calls His children to surrender was no stranger to surrender. He gives. He takes. We give. We take. And sometimes quiet seasons when there is unrest and issues that need to be worked through, well, a flip side of those times can be that our communication line with God gets stronger than ever. That’s a huge flip side, a huge benefit for sure.
So, I’m thankful for words…for times of conversation and connection…and for times of quiet and reflection. Life is full of it all. And I think the more mindful I am of the fact that it is God who gave me my first breath, and Him who knows when I will breathe my last, that the things I breathe out in the in-between- with words and actions will point to His goodness. I think that’s what He wants. Not to point to our sufficiencies or inadequacies or accolades or talents, but to point to Him…to ‘take a deep breath’ and breathe in the truth of who He is. If we do that, am thinking what we exhale might be a bit more full of life to the people in our lives who are ‘breathing in” these words we say.
So, I’m thankful for words and connections today. And thankful for those of you along the journey who are constantly taking in this flood of words—this breathing out of mine–and always welcome communication from you all so much!
“The Spirit of God hath made me, and the breath of the Almighty hath given me life.”
“Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.”