Saturday, January 15, 2011

Waking up the mind

A curious thing has been happening here in the Lee household.

We are reading more.

During dinner Kevin reads The Screwtape Letters aloud to us. We also read Mrs. Piggle Wiggle for some fun. During dinner prep, I put on The Swiss Family Robinson audiobook for Noelle and me to listen to.

My mind is waking up!

The fire that once burned bright in my schooling days has been lit again, and the flame is burning stronger everyday.

I notice that Noelle can entertain herself for a longer time now. What a huge change from a few months ago! She used to get bored easily and want to watch Sesame Street. Now she's always busy doing something, reading a book, pretending to cook, pretending to dress up, feeding her doll, looking at bugs and dogs. Recently she's been fascinated with Chinese audiobooks and learning her Chinese alphabet. She's not running to the laptop screaming, "Elmo! Elmo! Elmo!" any longer. What a relief! The "no tv" experiment is working. One of the things I seek to give Noelle is the ability to be resourceful and creative and imaginative, and the ability to experience the joy of reading.

Our resolutions are working on me, too. I have a whole, new list of books I want to read and am reading. I'm journaling again. That part of my mind that has been underused is now getting exercised again. To my shame, all the time I've lost, all the moments I did not use my mind for God's glory, when I did not love Him with my fullest potential - may God restore the years that the locusts have eaten.

And Kevin's having a renaissance of his own as well. He's the one who wanted to watch a theatrical adaption of C. S. Lewis' Screwtape Letters, an interest which has plunged me delightfully back into the world of thinking and imagination again. Tonight we sat through a 1.5 hour theatrical adaptation of Screwtape Letters at the Alex Theater in Glendale. Can I just say that my mind felt very strained for the first 15 minutes of the show? My modern, image-dependent, sound-bite addicted, ADHD sensibilities simply could not adapt so quickly to a one-person monologue, much less a monologue written by one of the greatest thinkers of the 20th century. Ever sat through a Shakespeare play and just got really nervous because you couldn't follow anything they were saying? That was me tonight. But it got easier once my mind started waking up a little to do some work. Paying attention, I am realizing now more than ever before, is really a skill to be cultivated. Neglect it and your whole life suffers.

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