I'm not a coffee drinker, but I do like to drink a lot of tea. Some brands like to put an inspirational message or quote on the little tags of their teabags. This particular morning, I read the message and sat with it for a few minutes. I do this sometimes, because it takes me a while to process information through my brain to my heart (Hello??? Any other introverts out there???).
My mind immediately understood the following message as one that I should apply to my family:
Practice kind listening and kind speaking.
I felt it was a necessary and welcomed reminder to be a kind listener and a kind speaker to my children and husband. I smiled, standing alone in my kitchen,
accepting and receiving this beautiful communication from Him. But then something shifted. An unexpected turn occurred. That message had made its way to my heart, and I began to see that the matter of this "kind listening and kind speaking" also applied to me.
I began to understand that I should be listening to the cues my body gives me when I'm too tired, when I’m in need of rest, in need of a break, in need of forgiving myself, in need of accepting help, in need of accepting love, in need of some stillness. I find that this is not the easiest thing in the world to do.
Listening. Takes. Practice.
And don’t get me started on the kind speaking. I am always my worst critic, so that “ugly voice” that fills you with untruths about yourself tends to rear its head every once in a while. I realized I need to also remember to speak kindly to myself and about myself. I need to unapologetically recognize the many gifts and talents that God has created in me and has gifted me with. I need to practice gratitude and be thankful for those gifts. In fact, rejoice about them! Yes!!!
Will you join me in taking a moment to recognize our beauty, our splendor, and marvel at His amazing creation called us?
Valerie admires truth-seekers, yearns to learn more about God and herself through life's circumstances, and believes that good food plus good wine plus good company equals happiness. She and her husband are high school sweethearts, and they have the privilege of raising two beautiful daughters. She is not a huge fan of talking on the phone, but would much rather catch up with someone in person. Most days, you'll find her in yoga pants and a ponytail.