It had been a particularly difficult Sunday start. It was nothing short of miraculous that we had arrived to the Church-house intact.
I found myself in the position of adversary for the teenage daughter. She was angry at my insistence on her obedience. My mama used to say to me that I’d better “toe the line.” I had no idea what that idiom meant in reality, but in our house it meant I’d better straighten up or I was going to experience the dire consequence that accompanied my choices.
On the way in the door I’d said a quick prayer, the kind mothers everywhere must pray. It was something along the lines of “Lord give me the strength not to lose my mind up in here.” My other two children heard me and giggled at their not-a-gansta mama prayer.
As I worshipped and sang, prayed and petitioned, my adversary sat beside me and fumed with protest. She declared, “Don’t touch me!” when I’d accidentally brushed up against her, and I thought for sure we’d go toe to toe when I removed from her possession a smuggled in tumbler filled with apple juice.
She applied her lip gloss during prayer, and just when I’d had almost enough and was certain that not-a-gangsta mom prayer might go unanswered, she unzipped the loudest sounding zipper in Alabama. Even the Preacher-Man who was speaking on the authority we have been given through Jesus, glanced in our direction.
Her Daddy was to my left, and while he had not been with us when the showdown began, he has learned to read the signs. He had patted me when he made his way to us as he left the stage from his weekly praise band gig. He had heard the zipper and felt me stiffen.
He leaned over and whispered in my ear, “She’s just makin’ noise.”
He is observant and direct. When he speaks to me, a man of few words. I’ve learned to listen when he speaks, to focus and pay attention because he doesn’t often repeat himself. I have also learned while he is not always profound and earth shattering with his words, he is wise.
“She’s just making noise.”
It was his way of saying to let it alone, let it go, and do not let the action of someone else influence me so much that I lose focus on the task at hand, on the King and what I had been instructed to do.
I’d allowed her disobedience to become my own.
Without even being aware I had lost sight of what I was to do. The noise of another drowning out the whispers from the King. In wisdom, my husband was telling me to ignore the noise, focus and pay attention to the One who is never just noise and Who has the ability to speak peace and calm to my tumultuous heart even in the center of conflict.