Excuse me please...

When our kids were younger, we tried many techniques to teach them NOT to interrupt when we were speaking with another adult.  The most effective strategy for us came as we encouraged them to simply place their hand on our arm.  We would acknowledge that we knew they needed us by placing our hand over theirs - it didn't mean we answered immediately, but they understood that we knew they needed us, and that we would get to them quickly.

Clay was a "full of energy", rambunctious 3-year-old... and 4-year-old... and, well you understand!  :)  So one day when I picked him up from preschool, he was not feeling particularly patient as I spoke with another mom.  He followed our protocol, and I acknowledged.. but it just wasn't working for him.  He began running around me in circles - that would have been okay... running off a little didn't work out so well.  You see, someone had just handed me an armload of dresses for my girls to try on.  I had the dresses, which were on wire hangers, draped over my arm.  Somehow that very active little boy of mine literally HOOKED himself with a hanger... in his left eye.  I know, you are cringing with me as I type it!  Well, I can tell you, he GOT my attention.
Thankfully, his eye was not damaged.  It had him like a fish on a hook, just had a hook on his eyelid.  With great care we unhooked him... he just needed to tell me that he had a great day!  :)

Now THAT was an interruption! 

So how do you handle those constant interruptions that we encounter daily... maybe not with the dramatic flair of a coat hanger, but unexpected, for sure.  I am trying with great intentionality to truly be present in each moment...  the challenge is that many moments come with additional, unexpected interruptions, so then does the interruption "become" the moment???
So, who better to look to for answers than our sweet Savior, Jesus.  The gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John) give us numerous examples of Jesus' moments of distraction and interruption in his day.  Luke 8 tells of one perfect example.  Jesus was welcomed by the crowd as they had been expecting him...  he was interrupted by Jairus whose only daughter was dying, so Jesus headed to Jairus' house to heal his daughter... but Jesus was INTERRUPTED  on the way to the first interruption in the crowds.  The Bible says there were so many people that Jesus was almost crushed, but someone in crowd touched Him.  Well, of course people touched Him... Peter reminded Jesus that there were people pressing and crowding all around Him.

Jesus knew this touch was different... "I know that power has gone out from Me." (Luke 8:46)  The woman who touched Him came trembling out of the crowd.  You see, she had been plagued with some bleeding disorder for twelve years, and the moment she touched Jesus, her bleeding stopped.  Jesus is the son of God, so we know that HE knew who touched Him.  He could have just gone on His way, but instead He stopped for just a moment to talk with her using that opportunity to acknowledge her faith... that HE was the healer.  He responded with, "your faith has healed you.  Go in peace."  Then He was on His way again. 

Do I take those moments to encourage and listen to others?  Do I ask each morning for God's guidance in each one that I will encounter during that day?  Am I in such a hurry to get to the next thing that I miss golden opportunities to share, to listen, to be interrupted?? 
I am thrilled with the opportunity that God has given to teach a classroom of 4th graders this school year. 

Lord, may I look forward to the interruptions...

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