Just take a little walk
Like everyone else, I have made a few decisions in life that I probably should have thought through a little more deeply. One of those occurred about two years ago when I decided it would be good for us to take two of the grandchildren with us on a trip to visit family. After a couple of days it was apparent that I have reached that age in life where the volume of activity produced by a seven year old and a fourteen year old is more than I can easily handle.
Hours on the road with movies playing in the seat behind me is a far cry from a calm and quiet ride. But that was the easy part. Squabbling and other acts of misbehavior between the two sisters resulted in a long and difficult journey.
The one that was seven years old at the time has a stubborn streak that surfaces from time to time and can ruin what should otherwise be a good time. Probably from road weariness, unfamiliar surroundings, and an overload of sugary snacks she became very uncooperative. After a while I had had my fill of her misbehavior so I told her we were about to take a walk. She resisted for a bit before she realized that Papa had spoken and there was no getting out of this one, so out the door we went.
It was a cold day in north Georgia yet she refused to put her coat on, but that did not stop our walk. As we moved out into the blustery weather it was not long before I saw that little arm slipping into the coat to relieve some of the misery of the cold wind. Our walk continued. I wonder what was going through her little mind as we strolled slowly along?
As we walked I did not say a word, nor did she. There were markers and monuments on the town square that I had never taken time to investigate before, so I took the opportunity to read what was engraved in the large granite stones—still without either one of us saying a word.
We finally completed the trip without any words and made our way back up to our hotel room. By then she was a different person—pleasant and cooperative. Admittedly, that did not forever solve the issue of her stubbornness and there are times when a different approach is needed to gain the results desired, but I think it planted a few productive seeds about good behavior, and I expect that it will be one of those things in life that she will long remember. Sometimes just a little walk and some time to think can produce positive results.
God can say and do much in our hearts as we take time to be still and quiet before Him. Jeremiah, one of the great prophets of God in the Old Testament, understood the value of waiting quietly upon the Lord. During a time of tremendous hardship that was inflicted upon the Jewish people because of their rebellion against God and refusal to heed His words of warning, Jeremiah penned these words: “The Lord is good to those whose hope is in Him, to the one who seeks Him; it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord” (Lamentations 3:25-26, New International Version).
We live in a world that makes it difficult to spend time quietly with God, but it’s worthwhile to put forth the effort to work some of those times into our lives. Just take a walk and let Him do something special in your heart.