In January of this year, I chose the word LISTEN as my year word. I wrote it in a variety of different scripts on colorful 3 x 5 cards, and taped them all over my house. In every room, I can see the word LISTEN, and be reminded that listening is my goal for the year.
As this year of 2014 comes to a close, what have I heard?
I have heard the sound of the intercom, calling the boarding for my flights to and from Arizona; New York City, twice; France; and Wisconsin.
I have heard people speak to me deeply about the death of a spouse, the sickness of a parent, and the stories of a long-time career. I have heard very small children giggle and the chatter of ten year-olds.
I have heard my family’s and friends’ voices often, either through time spent together or long-distance through the telephone. I have heard the “I dos” of newlyweds. I’ve heard choirs and congregations sing, and our symphony orchestra perform in the concert hall.
I have heard the lilting accents of French speakers, my Aussies, and my southern friends’ y’alls. And the quiet of silence.
I have heard the church bells in my neighborhood call out the noon hour and the evening masses, the roars of lawn mowers, the scraping of rakes, the crunch of leaves, and the rain that comes with the thunder and lightning. I’ve heard the choruses of birds and the caws from crows.
I have heard the soft sleepy breathing of my little dog and the husky purr of my kitty in the night and the jingle of their tags and bell in the day. I have heard my Guardian Angel whisper, “Be not afraid.”
It is good to LISTEN.
May you hear the beauty in the sounds all around you and in the silence. May you find love, joy, and peace. Merry Christmas. Happy 2015.