listenTURN IT DOWN!!!

The phrase uttered more by my parents in my youth than anything else. In adulthood, it still happens. My wife has wonderful hearing. I, through years of loud rock and roll and motorcycle exhaust, have less than stellar hearing. To keep up with my love for near constant music or podcasts I keep a pair of earbuds in close range.

Earbuds. The cheap (and sometimes not cheap) accessory that seems everywhere now. I imagine most homes have a drawer full of them.

Audiophiles speak of “headphone” albums. These are recordings that should be listened to use headphones or earbuds. In High School I burned through several copies of Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon on headphones. I think it is the perfect example of a headphone record. The modern proximity would be the complex music released now with the production realizing people will be consuming it most using earbuds. These recordings are crafted to create auditory environments and textures only harnessed by a close listen. Modern Electronic music is amazing with a great pair of headphones or earbuds.

Life is important enough to warrant a close listen.

Earbuds help the listener hear the details. Instead of music heard from a distance, a poor quality source or distorted by environmental noise-you can concentrate on it. The little things come out clearer. We can learn to focus and contemplate.

I think the Holy Spirit calls us to this sort of attention to life. To get lost in the moment. To find space to pay attention to what might have been overlooked. To completely immerse ourselves in something for a brief moment.

When we only live life with the details at a distance, we miss out on what makes it truly great. Learning to be tuned into the Holy Spirit is much like putting earbuds in, queuing up a favorite piece of music and relaxing. Often, the most profound and foundational elements can easily get lost inside the everyday.

When was the last time you looked for the details the Holy Spirit might be trying to put right in front of you?