Your house will be silent soon enough
"I'll be so glad when I finally have some time of my own," said Rosie. Rosie always had people at her house. Although she loved them, she craved some quiet time -- time to do what she wanted without interruption. She dreamed of the day when she could enjoy her home, sort of by herself. It seemed that time would never come.
Around Christmastime, Rosie had her share of company. It was great, one of the best Yuletide seasons she had ever experienced. But when it was all over, Rosie was tired and ready for children to be back in school and people to return to their homes, for now at least. But she knew she would be ready to entertain again next year.
As Rosie was emailing a relative, James, who was unable to attend her celebration this year, she received an unusual response. "We really missed you," she had typed on the computer to James. "We had a wonderful time but now I'll be glad when it's all over. The kids have only a few days left before returning to school, ha." Evidently her words had touched James because he took her intended off-handed remark more seriously than she had meant it. But what James said was what she needed to hear.
"Don't worry about the irritants," he said. "The house will be silent soon enough." Rosie gasped when she recognized the significance of his remark. I doubt he realized the power it carried within both of them. Rosie contemplated the statement because he was exactly right. Although it seemed she seldom had individual time, Rosie would definitely miss the voices of the children and being involved in the lives of those around her. "Such wisdom," Rosie thought. "How did he know I needed to hear that advice?"
The word "silent" hit a nerve inside Rosie, almost like death. However, it was a remark that she valued. Rosie paid attention and vowed to always appreciate those around her knowing it was God's plan, for now. She would perceive her various stages and struggles in life as opportunities and gifts, refusing to complain, even in jest, that she wanted time alone. That, too, would come during the right season. People grumble about the snoring of their spouses, the noise of the kids and the constant demands on them by others. But all those interruptions will be silenced too -- someday.
Your human dwellings -- your bodies, minds and souls -- will be silenced, as well. But, presently, you still have a lot to contribute. Sing, work, contribute to life and keep on dancing while you can. Take time to make your life what you want it to be and accomplish, at least some of what fulfills you, now. Within the midst of duties you must perform, insert periods of enjoyment also. When life is filled with raising children, working and interacting with others on a constant basis, squeeze intervals in for what's valuable to your well-being. Live today and refuse to put it off until later.
Don't wait to take those guitar lessons. Learn to ride a bicycle or go back to school. Life truly is short. Help others while you can and consider it an honor and an opportunity. You often think you can't go on, but you can. Rest some now, enough to keep yourself healthy, but know that later on you'll have ample time to relax, that too coming when it's meant to. Give to life all you can while you're able; enjoy those around you and be thankful you can participate. Assume a grateful attitude rather than a despairing one.
Take care to comprehend that nothing lasts forever, and although your houses, too, will be silent soon enough, you can remain encouraged. Recognize what Scripture says. "There's a time for everything and a season for every activity under the heavens" (Ecclesiastes 3:1)
God continues to care.
Ellen Shuck holds degrees in psychology, religious education and spiritual direction and provides spiritual direction to people at her office.