Mid sentence I realized I was doing it.
Somewhere in the conversation I'd ceased really listening and started planning what I'd say back. Without being aware, I had an agenda and I was implementing it; making sure she knew what I thought, knew, and understood.
I had something to prove. I quit listening to her with an ear and heart to minister and understand her, and listened only for how I could respond in a way that would show her that a)I'm not the idiot I think she thinks I am and 2) I am a faith-filled person even if I think she doubts it.
Instead of genuinely putting her needs and concerns above my own, I pushed my own agenda of being understood. It doesn't happen very often--this need to prove myself--but once in a while it rears it's ugly head.
I'm sure to the casual observer nothing seemed amiss, but I knew what was driving my end of the conversation. I gave myself the mental equivalent of a slap and continued the conversation with a different motive and attitude. I have no idea if she noticed or not, but it made all the difference on my end.
Ephesians 4:2 "Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love."
Thursday, August 27, 2009
She's always been sweet. Usually smiling, kind and gentle; that's my girl.
She woke up this morning, got ready and greeted me with a big hug & smile.
Happy birthday, honey! I whispered, still blinking the sleep from my eyes.
Thanks, mom! came the cheery response.
She's been waiting for this day for months. Well, years, really.
Her celebration started a week ago. Twelve girls descended on our home ready for a party. But the planning has been in the works for a month.
I suggested she have a theme for the party. She looked at me and replied, with a characteristic smile "Disney Princesses". That sounded like fun...I'm all into dressy, girly, princess stuff. Armed with nothing but ideas ( and a little cash), we headed off to party places and dollar stores to search for princessy stuff.
A few weeks later, the cake baked, the table set, the house and food ready, and no males in sight, we prepared for the arrival of the girls.
Upon entering our home in a swarm, they donned their borrowed princess dresses, primped in front of mirrors and then the party started.
After a fun, loud, giggly photo shoot, and amidst lots of talking, laughter, and goofy teenage girl stuff, I called them into the banquet. With gifts for each girl, food in abundance and friendship all around, they celebrated with us.
Twelve 15 and 16 year old girls dressed up like princesses, sitting at a feast, enjoying one another. Reading from I Peter 2:9-10 "But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood..." , I prayed with them and told them how, if you were a daughter of the King you were truly a princess. It was all I could do to not to cry(sappy person that I am).
Well, the meal ended and they went on to spend hours laughing, talking, playing truth or dare, mafia, sitting around a fire, having a dance off (at 4 a.m.) and staying up ALL night! It was everything she'd hoped for and worth the missed sleep for me.
But that was a week ago. Today's the day.
She's finally sixteen.
Brad & I gave her a ring this morning. A ring to remind her of our love, to remind her of her Heavenly Father's love, to remind her of a call to holiness, and to remind her that she's truly a princess.
Happy Birthday, Beautiful girl...we love you!