Post-it Note #26: A Voice in the Chaos

Someone asked me once if I cook every day.  The answer is yes.  I usually cook 7 days a week.  It’s not because I want to be Martha Stewart, but it’s from necessity.  If you ever saw my crew at a restaurant you would know how expensive…..and nerve wracking the experience can be.  Even the dollar menu at McDonald’s can be daunting.  So supper time is family time and we’re usually all around the table at home.

We often do family devotions or pray about things going on.  Right now we’re working on our list of 1000 things to be thankful for before Christmas.  Dad usually arrives home just in time for dinner and all those kids begin to clamor for his attention.  The dinner table is the place where we all come together once each day – all 8 of us.  We are not the “quiet Posts”.  That’s another family.  We are the loud and rowdy Posts and my friend Wilma says it like this……”I couldn’t decide if I should go to the movies or come watch y’all eat supper!”. 🙂

Supper time is basically barely managed chaos.  The kids are so glad to see their dad and they start with a million questions and a million statements and fight over who will sit beside him and we’re off to the races.  Sometimes I watch it all unfold and my eyes glaze over as I wonder if I could sneak out while they are not paying attention.  The dollar menu is sounding ok to me if it comes with a side of quiet.

Last night was no different.  About half way through the meal I was wondering how so much noise could come from people who are supposed to be chewing.  Everyone wanted to talk at once and wanted everyone to pay attention to them when they were talking.  I pulled out the “thanks journal” and it didn’t get any better.  They started talking over each other to get their thing in the book next.  I may or may not have threatened to go on strike and never feed them again if they didn’t get their act together.

So in the middle of all this craziness, my 5-year-old gets out of her chair and comes and stands beside me.  She puts her arm through mine, leans in and whispers, “Mommy, I’m thankful for the moon.”  Nobody else heard her…………but I did and I wrote it in my book.

I think our supper table is a picture of this world we live in.  It’s crazy.  It’s chaotic.  It’s loud and sometimes even unruly.  There’s so many voices clamoring for attention.  So many questions.  So many statements.  So much competition and it all escalates to the point at times that we threaten to quit or to sneak away from the madness.

But then, my 5-year-old has it right.  She looked around.  Realized that what she was doing wasn’t going to work (be louder than the other voices), so she scooted up close to me and whispered and I heard her voice loud and clear.  And I wrote it in my book.  She didn’t have to talk louder.  She just had to talk to the right person.

God always hears our voice.  We don’t have to fight for his attention, but sometimes we have to step out of the fray so that we can hear HIS voice.  Peace is a powerful thing, friend.  And even in the midst of chaos it is yours to have.  Philippians 4:6-8: “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”  Peace is ours.

But peace seems impossible when we look around at the craziness in our world.  I only have to read the headlines to be appalled, stunned, disgusted and find my peace waning.  Sometimes it just seems too much.  All the clamoring.  All the commotion.  All the hate.  All the evil.  All the deception.  How can we have peace in the midst of all of this without burying our head in the sand?

How about James 4:8?  “Come near to God and He will come near to you.  Peace isn’t a matter of circumstance.  It’s a matter of focus.  Focus on God.  Maybe nobody hears your voice in the chaos, but He will.  You don’t have to talk louder.  You just have to talk to the right person.  The Almighty!  And He will speak back.  That brings peace.  Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.  There’s only one voice that matters in the chaos.  Listen for His today.  It makes all the difference.