Look Who’s Talking!

I’m glad my baby girl can’t talk yet. Although she is growing waaay to fast, she hasn’t begun to master the English language. I am completely fine with it. I want her to stay a wittle wittle guwrl as long as possible!

She does communicate to me. I can tell when she is happy and giggly. It is easy to hear when she is mad. Her sounds and facial expressions are always showing me the story of how she feels. I’m sure her mother is even better than I am, at reading the information she is passing along about what she wants next.

I know at some point she will learn to ‘use her words’ and just speak out a request, that is plain to understand from my point of view. She won’t learn mandarin Chinese, or Swahili as her primary language, because that wouldn’t get her what she wants, from us as quickly as English would.

Every once in awhile, I do wish she could just tell me what it is, that’s bothering her. She may be fussing and I have tried all of my usual tricks. If those don’t bring calm, then I feel stuck and wondering what to try next.

Isn’t our baby Joella, just like most people we meet? Isn’t it obvious to an observer how we are feeling most of the time? Other than very subtle variations on the theme, we can tell just by being around someone, if they are happy or sad or angry or bored or (especially with me) hungry? It isn’t only brain scientists or rocket surgeons that are able to pick up on clues about how we are feeling at any given moment.

Some of us can hide the origins of our pain or pretend to exist in an alternate emotional state than we are experiencing inside, but overall even these attempts can be seen through fairly easily. I think that as a neighborly citizen of my local universe, I typically do not try to act upon these inferences of someone’s apparent inner needs. Usually, I would only act, in the direct request, made verbally by that person.

So here we are, a bunch of babies, walking around. We can express ourselves in all kinds of ways, but I find that I rarely speak directly, in a commonly understood language about exactly what my needs are. Dang, no wonder that inner-personal relationships can be so tough sometimes. Nope, I usually resort to passive-aggressive ignoring, or maybe round-about gossip, or at worst, a complete shutdown, leading to massive explosion!

God sees our needs, right? God knows our hearts and our inner-most desires, right? God surely has omnipotent access to the tiniest kernel of our thought and emotional life…

But, what if God, wants things to be made plain, just like we do? What if God is aware of our uncomfortable-ness, or our general malaise or anger or jealousy or nagging desires? Does that mean God won’t act and help us out? Does God desire our suffering or soreness? I doubt it.

I wonder if God is just like our loving parent, who is patiently waiting for us to learn to come to Him in a language that he understands best. I wonder if silent meditative and contemplative prayer, can be one way that our communication with God is most clearly transmitted. Just like my our little daughter, or a co-worker, or a family member or friend, I wonder if God, just like us, is always willing to respond to a clear and direct request.

I know that if someone actually speaks out loud, an invitation or appeal or even a demand, I am almost always willing to fulfill that. I know that casual remarks or insinuations, rarely get my full attention and almost never, my actions.

Today, I want to remind myself that I don’t want to be the fussy baby, failing to ‘use my words’ and just plainly ask a person, in confident and considerate English for what I need. I want to sit quietly and open door to my heart, while I talk with God, about using His will to make my life and work more effective in this world.

I want to use all these little gifts of ideas that I learn from my very typical and plain, amazing baby girl JoJo.

Have a wonderful week, leading up to the birth of Christ.

Take Care, and God Bless!


Aaron Nichols


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