Yes, YOU

Hello? Anyone there? Anyone listening?

Anyone?

Ever feel this way? Like you are such a tiny, insignificant voice in the world that no one hears you? I felt that way just this morning, as I stood in my boys’ bedroom, piles of trash, dirty laundry, books and toys at my ankles. Before I even opened my mouth they had perfected the Vacant Stare. You know the one I mean. The one where they pretend to listen while actually plotting to shove everything in a corner the second I leave.

I find this particularly frustrating. And this is just one example of the kind of things that happen each day. It’s not just because I’m a stay-at-home mom of kids with little-to-no short term memory. I experienced similar frustrations when I worked full time. It’s discouraging to feel as though your voice is not heard, and it becomes easy to wonder What’s the point? Why even try?

A few weeks ago, I was reassured in the nicest way that, yes, someone is listening. I was at a conference when a woman I had never met came up to me. She said, “You probably don’t know who I am, but several years ago my daughter stayed with you…” She proceeded to tell me how her teenage daughter was blessed by the week she spent with me in our home. A warm feeling of complete joy filled my heart when I heard this – it was like coming home to a surprise package on the doorstep. Of course, I remembered her daughter, and the time we spent together, but I didn’t remember doing anything special. I remembered joking with her, talking together and watching a movie or two, just hanging out and doing normal stuff. But something I said in that week helped her daughter somehow.

I can think of so many people who have done the same for me – people who offered a word of two of encouragement right when I needed it. I’m sure, for example, my friend Bill has no idea he gave me confidence to keep writing when I wondered if I should quit. I’m sure my sister (in law) Whitney has no idea how much I needed her gentle reminder to forgive someone many years ago. I’m sure my friend Nichole has no idea how much she inspires me by all she does, especially those times her husband is deployed. And I could go on and on and on… Many of you would make my list as well with things you have said or done to encourage me.

This is especially important to remember as we make our Christian walk through the world. One of our goals is to witness to the salvation Christ gives, and we can do this in the quietest, most unassuming ways. We can just hang out, get to know someone, and offer a simple testimony of how the Lord works in our lives. Β When the LORD came to Elijah, He wasn’t found in the great and powerful wind, or the earthquake, or the fire, but in the gentle whisper (I Kings 19). Likewise, our approach doesn’t have to be loud, in-your-face, revival style witnessing. It can be one small statement in one regular old conversation that makes a difference for someone. You likely will never even know it happened, but what an amazing thing it is to know God can, and does, use you. Yes, YOU.

So next time you wonder if you anyone hears you as you go about your completely normal and average day, remember that someone is always listening. And remember, too, the lesson of Queen Esther: For who knows whether the Lord has brought you here for just such a time as this?

 

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10 thoughts on “Yes, YOU

  1. Bravo! Very true. We never know who is watching and listening to the things we say and do, and The Lord uses us to touch the hearts of others. Tell those boys to pick that darn trash off the floor! Thanks again for the way you inspire me continually.

    1. Thanks for such a lovely comment, Ann. You are one of those people who inspires me as well – I always wish I could be more like you in your love and kindness for other people. (And I will pass your trash message along to Daniel and Mark!)

  2. Brilliant post, Deb, and I love your reference to Esther at the end. I wonder often about situations and how there must be a purpose, even if we ourselves can’t see the big picture. It has to be noted, too, that with kids, they may not seem to be paying attention (I remember the Vacant Stare! lol) but they don’t miss a trick. And the older the get, the smarter they believe their parents to be. It takes a couple decades to get to that point, but the time only adds to the sweetness of those three little words. “You were right.” πŸ™‚

    1. Oh, Lisa, That is the greatest bit of news I’ve heard in a long time!I’m going to hang on to that one and hope by the time they say “You were right” I’m not too old to remember what they’re talking about. πŸ™‚

  3. Debra,
    What an inspirational post. Yes, it is so true that actions speak louder than words and a whisper can be heard louder than in your face shouting. you have inspired me to thank someone. Bless you.

    1. Maybe I will have more success with my kids if I try that whisper instead of shouting at them to clean up their room! And speaking of thank yous, I was just drinking coffee out of the mug you gave me when we met. Every time I use it I think that was such a thoughtful thing for you to do!

  4. Mrs. Mayhew, I was that daughter who’s life you touched. The time I got to spend with your family, while also helping with VBS was one of the best memories I have. You may feel like you don’t remember doing much, but from my standpoint, you were an “adult” that was my friend. I was able to talk with you about things that I wouldn’t necessarily talk to my parents about and still get an adults point of view. I don’t remember what we talked about (I’m sure it was boys, haha.), but I remember feeling a sense of comfort inside your home.

    You were amazing then, and I can only imagine you’re just as, if not more, amazing now.

    Thank you for being there, even if you didn’t think you were.

    (P.S. I still have one of your family photos that you allowed me to take home, but I don’t remember you having seven kids then! You’re blessed!)

    I pray that God continues to bless you and your family!

    1. Robyn!!! It’s so great to hear from you! You have no idea how many times I’ve thought about you throughout the years. You did promise to come back and see us, you know. πŸ™‚ I heard from your mom that you’re doing great and I even got to see a picture which was so nice. Thank you so much for your kind words…you have absolutely made my entire week. I’m glad you felt a sense of comfort in my home, especially since I know my kids were so in love with you and always trying to play with you. πŸ™‚ I pray for God’s blessings on you as well and hope to stay in touch.

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