lawn lesson

by Kristen

Over the rumble of a lawnmower I can hear the neighbor two doors down instructing her son. The words are muffled, but I recognize the intonation and short, declarative statements of a lesson.

I make out a few phrases.

“Back up.”

“You’re veering left.”

“Left!”

The nine year old emits an indecipherable squeal.

“Good.”

“Stop.”

“Good job.”

As I listen to the coaching of a mom—not the lecturing or the explaining but the real-time, step-by-step directions—I realize how often I wish I could hear those quick bursts of instruction from God.

“Stop.”

“You’re veering left.”

“Back up.”

“Now!”

“Good.”

“Look at me.”

“Almost.”

“Good job.”

But it doesn’t work that way. There are no audible words as I navigate new lessons or work my way through a review of something I probably should know by now.

Or at least the words don’t come from the mouth of God. They come in the texts and emails from friends and mentors, the counsel of parents, the teaching of pastors, the encouragement of my small group. Truth is truth. God speaks through the voices He knows I’ll hear . . . if not always obey.

The lawnmower cuts off, and I realize I was listening to my neighbor’s son mow the lawn for the first time. I can almost hear the words, “Well done!”

Then I realize those are the first two words I may hear from God in His own voice someday.

 

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