When Our Hearts are Heard

Bird - Blue Jay

I sit and drink tea on her balcony and she hears my heart. The leaves and trees are dust-covered — evidence of life in the desert. Birds noisily converse, talking about the day’s worms.

And she hears my heart. She asks the right questions, the ones that get underneath my words and sentence structure. At first it’s my mouth talking but soon after my heart begins to talk.

That’s what happens when our hearts are heard. 

There is comforting encouragement and gentle rebuke. There is quiet challenge and  sober reminder. There is humor and laughter, a call to not take myself too seriously. And the birds continue talking about the worms.

When our hearts are heard we can move forward, not in a defensive posture but in humility and service.

I get up early before the day break. I watch night turn to morning from my space on the couch. The leaves and trees are dying — evidence of life in winter. There are no birds, no chirping about worms – they’ve gone to a warmer place. I am alone. My cry is heard by God alone, human companionship is gone.

And He hears my heart. The sharp truth of His word gets into my brain. At first it’s just reading, but soon after a bridge connects that deep chasm between head and heart and I am changed.

There are times like the balcony – when God gives me that person who can keep step with me and help me make sense of my life, of my heart. There are other times like the couch when friends are absent, silent – but Truth keeps beckoning and my heart is heard.

The result is the same. I leave with my heart full — full of grace and hope, laughter and tears. Nothing has changed, yet everything has changed – that’s what happens when our hearts are heard.

And those birds just keep on chirping about worms.

Today may your heart be heard!

Breakfast at Sugar Mags

We met at 8am on a Saturday morning. It had taken months of planning. Months of “We should get together for breakfast sometime” Months of procrastination, mostly on my part.

And then it happened. Four friends who have known each other for 16 years came together. It was as though we were all young again sitting around Lisa’s pool, toddlers at our feet and school-age children splashing in cool blue water on hot summer days; the days of waffles for Sunday dinner and small problems.

The babies and preschoolers are now in college and working adults – they no longer splash in Lisa’s pool or have sleep-overs on long summer nights. And we? We are slightly grayer and now know what it is like to stay up all night praying for our kids. Despite this, we have those happy wrinkle lines around our eyes; the ones that show the world how much you laugh. At least I like to think so.

These are comfortable relationships; there is no one-upmanship, no envy, no sanctimonious “my kids are better than yours” – just laughter, verbalized frustration with some of our situations, and sharing of life’s journey.

Over Sugar Magnolia’s famous blueberry pancakes, omelets and Crazy Monkey French Toast we picked up where we had left off so many years ago. While we have seen each other in passing during the last 16 years, we haven’t really shared life.

In our world of broken relationships and me-centered living, making time for female friendships is important but always seems to get pushed to the side. The “I’ll call you!” or “Let’s get together” hangs on our lips but too often doesn’t move into action.

We want to change that. We want this to be a monthly event. It’s a time in life where we need our friends; where it’s easy to feel irrelevant in our children’s lives and bored in our careers.

Friends remind us that we are more than our children and careers. Friends challenge us to keep our faith….and our sanity. Friends go out to breakfast (no matter how long it takes to plan) and keep the waitress running for coffee. Friends let us eat Crazy Monkey French Toast and remind us that God is Big, that he is present and that he has not forgotten us .