(Personal note... I've hit a very dry spell in my writing lately, so I hope you all will bear with me and Jesus while we take a hiatus and I post a bunch of leftovers from when I was keeping a blog. They may be a bit different from my usual fare but we'll see what the Lord wants to accomplish here if you're willing. Here goes...)

 I was reminded this morning of a funny episode from when my son was little. I was still working at the time so he must been about two. He went to a sitter while I worked. She was the best, but she was also a little eccentric. Sometimes Wil would come home with what we began calling Norma-isms. One day I noticed that he would suddenly stop what he was doing, jerk the back of his hand up to his mouth and make a “whoot” sound. (It’s so much better to see than to explain.) I couldn’t figure out what he was doing, so I began to watch for the trigger and noticed that he was directing the action at us after a while, usually because of something he didn’t like.

One afternoon I got to Norma’s a little early and stood at the kitchen window watching her interact with the kids while they played in the yard. She had her back to me. Wil was skidding around on the big wheel like Mario Andretti and when he got too carried away and tried to take out a spectator on one turn, Norma raised her hand to her mouth and I heard a “whoot”. She had a whistle in her hand. She was calling an “infraction”. Wil stopped in his tracks, made a correction to his behavior and went on his way. It was truly amazing. (Norma taught me everything I know about parenting, so if you think my kid is cool…you can thank her, not me!)

We still “give the whistle” to each other in my house when someone gets too carried away with something. It’s still effective, even though it’s all in fun. This morning, though, as my son and my husband horsed around and one of them got the whistle, I thought about how often I have prayed for God’s voice to be louder than any other voice in my life…and how it’s just not. I wish God would give me the whistle. I wish, when I begin to get a little carried away with myself, that He would stop me in my tracks and make the world pause long enough for me to shift my attitude before I resume activity. Unfortunately, I’m left to self-moderate, like little Wil (And he was better at it than I am!). Sometimes I need to throw my own hand up -usually to cover my big fat mouth- and give myself a little “whoot”, even if it’s under my breath.

So if you see me pulling a Norma one day, you can just smile and know that I’m attempting to self-moderate…because as I think about it, I did hear that still small “whoot” of the Holy Spirit, and He’s giving me the opportunity to stop my big wheel before I do serious damage to myself or others. Now if I can just get the brakes on this thing to work…