When Love Sounds Like Noise
These past few days (make that a week and a half) have been a bit harsh. In the middle of summer, likely due to my plane trip home, I ended up catching a cold. It’s a terrible cold that even as I write this still hangs on, while I sniffle, hoping for relief. Yesterday, as I’m starting to feel MUCH better, I noticed my youngest starting to sniffle. Today, my oldest wakes up and says, “What’s happening to me?! My throat hurts!”
The youngest is happy, a little sniffle isn’t going to hold him back. Though as the day drags on, he becomes more and more whiney. My oldest has lost considerable energy as the day went on. It ended with him sinking into the couch, I’m pretty sure he basically turned into liquid by how he laid there.
I was getting my oldest ready for bed. He got the option to sleep in my room with the air conditioner (and humidifier) and he takes it. He lays down with one blanket. I bring him a glass of water. Having just suffered as he currently is, I know that he’ll be really thirsty in the middle of the night. Then I find his blanket— HIS blanket that’s soft and smells like him. I grab Rufus, his diabetic bear. These are actions that he appreciates but clearly wasn’t expecting. I fill the humidifier and turn it on. I turn on Christmas lights so he’s able to see in case he wakes up during the night. I turn the air conditioner on because the room is easily 80* and I just leave him be.
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It was in this moment when I felt the Lord whisper to my heart, “That’s when love makes a sweet sound.” I wasn’t doing anything out of the ordinary, I was just tucking him in the best I could, knowing he is sick. I wasn’t doing anything extravagant or attention worthy. I was just being a mom and taking care of my sick child.
Love sings sweetly in the midst of everyday moments.
Read 1 Corinthians 13:1-3
I love these verses. You can hear the consequences of a life that is without love. It’s loud! I imagine it to be like a symphony. The intention is something beautiful and lovely to listen to and experience. Instead, without love, the symphony turns into a bunch of instruments being held in the immature hands of beginners. The beat is off, the wrong notes are being played, instruments are falling over because the user doesn’t know how to use them. Everything is disjointed, scattered, and unpleasingly LOUD!
If you add love into this symphony, the instruments are held in the hands of masters. Everyone is on the beat and playing the right notes. There’s order, peace instead of chaos, and even the smiles are genuine. These sweet moments where we set out to love the world around us in the smallest, most ordinary ways, are the makings of a beautiful symphony.
What the Noise Teaches Us About Love
The mission is love. The best part of a symphony (outside of the skillful music) is watching the conductor. The conductor masterfully orchestrates every sound to allow harmonious and orderly sound to shine through. Love is the mission. In life’s symphony, we look to the Master. We look to God and the example He sets. Following His lead allows our lives (our sound) to beautiful and orderly so that love shines through. If we need a hint, we look at John 3:16- “For God so LOVED the world…” The mission is love. The motivation is love. Follow the Master, Love as He loves.
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It’s not about the gifts. 1 Corinthians 13:1-3 talk a lot about these beautiful gifts (gifts we may even understand as the gifts of the Holy Spirit), but if we notice “but have not love…” The gifts mean nothing if love isn’t the motivation or the mission. It’s not about the gifts, it’s all about love. The gifts support love, not substitute for it. Anything less than love is disjointed, scattered, and an unpleasingly LOUD noise. It’s just noise. Noise isn’t beautiful, it isn’t purposeful, and it doesn’t reflect a genuine love.
If love isn’t in our actions, we’re a noise-maker. Have we considered our own motivations as we engage with our families, our friends, and the world around us? Do we work as if working for God? Even in a symphony, the instruments have to keep their eye on the conductor and watch for his leading. Are we keeping and eye on God and watching for His leading and direction as we navigate through our day and our various interactions?
Remember, even the mundane parts of our lives are part of this symphony. The small moments, matter. The mundane routine moments, matter. The small actions we take to make sure another person feels cared for, matter. Packing lunches, wiping snotty noses, folding laundry, doing dishes, all these tasks matter when love is part of them. Let’s not get caught up in the lie that the mundane routine moments don’t matter. In fact, I’m willing to bet they mean more than we can possibly imagine!