Be Interruptible

After an encounter with a 6.5 year old at the pool over the past weekend, the Lord taught me so many lessons. You might have seen my picture on instagram or facebook, but the Lord continued to speak to me about the situation and it was really something I wanted to share in hopes of encouraging at least one other person.

If you didn’t see, Colby and I went to the pool on Saturday afternoon. I was looking forward to reading my magazine and some peace and quiet. However, there was a girl swimming by herself and she kept swimming right around me. She was by no means shy and asked several times,

“Will you watch me”?

“Yes”, I answered.

Initially, I was feeling frustrated that she was not only splashing me, but getting all my stuff wet too. Then she asked,

“Will you play with me?”

Would I play with this girl who was honestly annoying me?

“Yes”, I answered

That must have been Jesus talking. I was in the zone, which honestly, I often am. I’m usually too engulfed in my own thoughts to notice my surroundings.

I put away my things, got out my goggles (which by no coincidence I went back and grabbed to put in my bag right before we were leaving for the pool) and started playing. Her mother was with a group of friends for a party. She was busy eating and drinking and didn’t seem to mind, or acknowledge, that her daughter was playing with a stranger.

“Will you hold my hands?”

“Yes”, I answered.

So we played. We swam. We sat under the fountain. We attempted handstand under the water. We went back and forth between opposite ends of the pool. We held hands and went under water at the same time. Over and over. Erin told me all the names of her siblings (four) and said that her mommy and daddy didn’t live together. She mentioned several times, “If I do (insert action here), then my mom will yell at me”.

What happened when it was time for her to eat? Erin brought her hot dog and sat right next to me on the edge of the pool. She wanted to be as close as possible. Until, her mom yelled at her as she wanted her to be seated.

The Lord not only spoke to me during this pool encounter, but taught me so much as I reflected on the situation throughout the rest of the weekend. I wanted to share some thoughts here:

  • Be Interruptible. As I said, I am usually so wrapped up in what I’m doing to notice others around me. I’m someone who is always in a hurry. When running errands, I’m darting in and out to get my stuff done. But, what if I hadn’t said “Yes”? The day would have ended much differently for both of us. How many times have I missed the Lord prompting me to notice my surroundings? This encounter taught me to be more aware of my surroundings and more interruptible. It’s amazing how saying “yes” blessed me.
  • People need love and they need Jesus. All Erin wanted was someone to watch her. Someone to listen to her. Someone to play with her. But, Erin isn’t the only one. Deep down every person needs Jesus. There are so many people looking to be ‘filled’. They don’t understand their longing is for a Savior. They look in the wrong places: sex, food, working out, shopping, other people, drugs, porn, alcohol. You name it. If you are looking for love and you think that someone else or something else can fulfill that – it’s not possible. Not your spouse, boyfriend, or anything or anyone else, only Jesus. And, not only do each of us need Jesus, but we need to act like Jesus and love others. We can love others well because He first loved us.
  • Ask Boldly. Erin was definitely not shy. She was not scared to me ask me my name or questions about me. At just 6.5 years old she was persistent. What a beautiful picture of how we should come to Jesus – asking boldly and persistently for what we desire. Don’t settle, but dream big and ask big! What we pray reflects what we believe about God.
  • Divine Appointments. – God knew I was going to be there and He knew Erin was going to be there. None of that was an accident. Jesus has divine appointments set up for you too. Just like my pool encounter or my airport encounter, He wants to use you to encourage others and vice versa. Ask for a divine appointment from Him.
  • God Wants to Talk to You. What if I had said yes, but learned nothing from the situation? Thankfully, I allowed God to minister to me while playing with her and while reflecting on the afternoon. He had so much to teach me and I’m just glad I had my ears open. Don’t miss the times He is trying to talk to you and teach you – whether it be while you are studying His word or while you are swimming with a 6.5 year old.

God wants to be involved in every area of your life. Don’t get so caught up that you miss Him trying to speak to you or teach you! He is waiting to talk and He is waiting to listen! Just as Erin wanted a relationship with me, He wants the same with you and He desires for you to have the same with others too. Be interruptible!

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    Posted at 06:55h, 31 July Reply

    love this–excellent story too. being a nanny it is my job to watch the little ones do the exact same trick a thousand times (hehe), but i know what you mean about being in the zone. i have had this happen to me way too often! great reminder.

  • Betsy
    Posted at 08:42h, 31 July Reply

    So good!

  • Jelli
    Posted at 09:17h, 31 July Reply

    What a beautiful picture of God’s love. Thank you for your patiencce. Many times I feel like I’m Erin’s mom, doing other things while my kids fend for themselves (though usually not for quite so long and certainly not around water). Thank you from all the moms who sometimes need a break and for all the little children who need a friend.

  • Rebecca Jo
    Posted at 10:51h, 31 July Reply

    This is probably the sweetest thing… I love the lessons you got out of it.
    I just imagine us as that little one wanting to be near to Jesus. Hold my hand Lord!

  • Mary Collins
    Posted at 11:28h, 31 July Reply

    I like this post. What if Jesus chose not to listen to us because He was too busy? It is a wonderful thing to stop what you doing and be a blessing at the moment someone needs you.

  • Amie
    Posted at 11:32h, 31 July Reply

    What a great reminder!! I tend to be the very same way in that I’m on a mission where ever I go and I certainly would have been the same way in this situation. I would have been in my own world. Thank you for sharing 🙂

  • Stephanie
    Posted at 11:41h, 31 July Reply

    I’ve had similar encounters and never really thought about it in this way- what a great reminder! Thanks for sharing!

  • Lara @ MommyKazam
    Posted at 11:58h, 31 July Reply

    Wonderful story! I am very guilty of being too wrapped up in my own head to notice my surroundings and what others may need from me or what lesson I am supposed to learn. Thank you for this wonderful reminder to be present, aware, and open to the Lord’s blessings and lessons.

  • Grace
    Posted at 12:11h, 31 July Reply

    Love this! God met the desire in her heart through you for some time and attention from someone who made her feel special. I’m tempted to be cross at the mom, but neither do I know her situation. It’s good to be reminded God has encounters like these planned, and to meet them when they come!

  • Sheryl
    Posted at 12:32h, 31 July Reply

    I was so touched by your photograph on Instagram last week and this post is simply beautiful. God touched both you and Erin last week! Thank you for sharing!

  • Síochána Arandomhan
    Posted at 13:28h, 31 July Reply

    What a lovely story. It is so important to be present for children.

  • Nina @ Flowers in my Hair
    Posted at 13:33h, 31 July Reply

    I LOVE this. We both had “pool” lessons this week.

  • Ashley
    Posted at 13:58h, 31 July Reply

    Oh Caroline! I love this for so many reasons. I have been thinking on the ways I have closed myself off from these situations by spending time on my phone instead of getting to know strangers. Thank you for these beautiful words, the reminder, and for the way you loved on that little girl.

  • Biana @Blovedboston
    Posted at 14:29h, 31 July Reply

    Oh this is so great – I love the one about asking boldly! xo, Biana – BlovedBoston

  • Justine Y @ Little Dove Creations
    Posted at 14:55h, 31 July Reply

    This was so beautiful and really gave me some serious food for thought. What kind of mother am I? Am I interruptable? What would my children think is most important in my life?

  • andi
    Posted at 16:32h, 31 July Reply

    it’s His will in our lives – NOT our will in His 😀

  • Jenna
    Posted at 16:52h, 31 July Reply

    Wow, this is unbelievable! God was speaking so clearly, and I love that you KNOW he was speaking to you through this. How beautiful! That little girl sounds like she really needs some love. You definitely showed that to her!

  • Lisa
    Posted at 18:17h, 31 July Reply

    I love how God used this little child to show you so many things. And she was blessed in the process, too!

  • Jonathan Key
    Posted at 21:33h, 31 July Reply

    This is a great reminder! People absolutely need love and they need desperately need Jesus. This post reminds me of John 13:34-35…

    “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”

    Will our friends remember a distant, unengaged family? Or will they remember a hospitable family?

    Will our neighbors remember a neat yard and a quiet family? Or people who took time to get to know them?

    Will our family’s remember a tidy house? Or will they remember a house full of love and grace?

    What kind of legacy are we leaving behind? Very thought provoking thanks!

  • Amber Under Construction
    Posted at 21:38h, 31 July Reply

    What an awesome lesson you learned through that sweet little girl. Thank you for sharing! Have a great weekend 🙂

  • Jennifer | The Deliberate Mom
    Posted at 21:41h, 31 July Reply

    Ahhhh! Goosebumps!

    Yes, yes, yes! I can’t believe how in sync your messages are with my life. I’ve been hearing this from all sorts of places and I’ve heeded it. Be interruptable. God works in the interruptions. Sometimes we try to push past or through the interruptions but if we pause, He’s there and He has something for us… an encounter, a person, a scripture, a prayer, or a sign.

    I love this!

    Thanks for sharing.

    Wishing you a lovely weekend.

  • Jessica
    Posted at 19:15h, 02 August Reply

    I love this! Such a good reminder for our everyday lives.

  • Esther
    Posted at 21:06h, 02 August Reply

    I love this post Caroline! I am trying to get better at slowing down to be more aware of people around me and what God might want to do through me. It’s definitely a challenge as I’m so often wrapped up in my own thoughts. Even as I am typing this post my son got out of bed and came to talk to me about the thunder and lightening storm happening here tonight…so easy to quickly say “go back to bed”. Interruptions are hard for type A personalities 😉

  • Gina
    Posted at 21:58h, 02 August Reply

    This was beautiful. It reminded me that I really want to make sure to be interruptible, even (especially) to my own kids. Thank you.

  • Jessica
    Posted at 00:28h, 03 August Reply

    What a beautiful message,filled with great reminders. That little girl was lucky to have you there, it sounds like you were a true blessing and filled her day with the joy and love that she truly needed. Thank you so much for sharing, it’s truly inspiring!

  • Nina
    Posted at 09:32h, 03 August Reply

    Such an important reminder! I’ve heard often that we have become slaves to our schedules. Our schedules can be our idols and we like to get things done in the order and fashion we set out to do them. But when we are interruptable, we open the door to allow God to move. I definitely need to continue to be mindful and work on this in my own life. Thank you for sharing!!

  • Katie
    Posted at 17:00h, 03 August Reply

    What a beautiful reminder! Thank you so much for sharing this.. perfect timing as I read this ready to leave for work. Let’s see how I can be interruptible at work 🙂 Katie xo

  • Pristine
    Posted at 04:32h, 04 August Reply

    What a great reminder!

  • Elle Spann
    Posted at 07:30h, 04 August Reply

    Loved the picture you shared last week- this is so true! It is easier said than done for me in too many cases and that needs to change!
    Southern Elle Style

  • Krystal
    Posted at 12:04h, 04 August Reply

    I bet you made that girls day! What a great story. I love the message – be interruptible. I love it so much that I’m writing it down and sticking it to my desk as a daily reminder of how to live life 🙂 THANK YOU!!!!

  • Sarah
    Posted at 14:08h, 06 August Reply

    I absolutely love love love this post and have been thinking about the idea of being interruptible ever since you posted the original photo on IG. Thank you for challenging me friend- pinning this for later reference too! 🙂

  • Rhonda
    Posted at 17:10h, 25 August Reply

    Love this!!!! Thank you for sharing! As someone who needs quality time to feel loved, it really means a lot to me when people are willing to have their life interrupted to spend time with me. And what a good reminder, too, to not push God off when I feel Him nudging me to spend time with Him!!

  • Laura @ Making Baby Provence
    Posted at 12:36h, 01 September Reply

    What a beautiful lesson you took from a not-so-chance encounter with a little girl. I love it! You did an excellent job conveying the lessons here. Thank you for sharing and causing me to do some soul searching today. That’s always appreciated!

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