Pay attention and turn your ear to the sayings of the wise; apply your heart to what I teach, for it is pleasing when you keep them in your heart and have all of them ready on your lips. So that your trust may be in the Lord… Proverbs 22:17-19
Listen, my children, to a father’s instruction; pay attention and gain understanding. I give you sound learning, so do not forsake my teaching. Proverbs 4:1-2
What are we paying attention to as we go through our days? Some of us awaken to the sound of pets requiring attention; some to the sound of alarm clocks, televisions, cell phones, or computers. Once we start the day, do we pay attention to God and the many ways God sends messages? What about people? Do we pay attention to the requests of persons around us? Are we paying attention to the messages in our daily routines and pathways?
A myriad of details, tasks, thoughts, feelings, and words await us each day. Lately, we have been praying, “God, in the midst of the day, help us to pay attention to the important, not just the urgent.” What invites our attention? What wisdom helps us pay attention to what we are paying attention to?
Recently, a patient requested that she be allowed to put her feet in the grass. For her, it was a way of experiencing the spiritual realm through nature. Another patient wanted to go outside and see the trees. For her, it was a way of praying without the ceiling obstructing her view of the heavens. Another patient wanted to be comforted in the thought that when they did not have the energy to pray others were praying to God on their behalf. Paying attention helps us see and take care of important things and not just urgent ones.
Prayer: God, as You speak through scriptures, whispers, dreams, circumstances, nature, and people in our lives, help us to pay attention to Your voice. May we hear You in the many ways You communicate. May we pay attention to the important and the urgent and may we choose wisely. May we live attentively today. Amen.