When my daughter was learning to talk, it became pretty obvious she had speech problems. I don’t mean just certain sounds, or lisping. I mean I couldn’t understand her unless I was looking right at her face.

If she was behind me, or out of my sight, I usually had no idea what she was talking about. It made car rides pretty interesting. If I was at a stop sign, and could stare at her via the rear view mirror, it was ok. Other than that, it was pretty much like this:

Daughter: Babbling. Something unintelligible. (Point at something                 out the window.) Garbled mouthwash sounds.

Me: “I don’t understand you, honey. Let’s wait until we get there.”

That’s fun for a two-year-old, right?

Thank the Lord for my son. When he was in the car, he’d watch her talk and then interpret. Sometimes I thought I was a character in a foreign film with audible subtitles. Other times a Marx Brothers comedy. But if not for him, my daughter and I would both get frustrated with the inability to communicate.

I experience much the same thing in faith sharing. 

I love the Small Group setting, and I am in a group every summer. There are five of us, and we’ve been meeting for several years. We have read many books together, and completed group studies too.

It never fails to amaze me how much I learn from these women. We are all reading the same chapters, and answering the same questions. But often, there are five different takes on the same theme. At the outset, I may not understand their point of view at all. But then, through discussions and explanations, a new perspective comes to light. I love that!

I believe that the Lord puts special people in our lives to act as Spiritual Learning Assistants, or “SLA’s”. 

Just as my son revealed the meaning of my daughter's garbled speech, my Small Group sisters open me up to the Lord's amazing love and intervention, through his work in their lives. 

God has many ways to communicate with his many people. He expresses himself to me in ways that I understand, but you may not…and vice-versa. When you take the time to translate your experience to me, then I’ll be born into a new awareness.

It might sound like: “Wlskj isodg“ to me at first, but you will interpret it as a new truth. That truth leads me to a new, deeper, and richer knowledge of the Lord. 

And God calls us to a deeper relationship with him. That’s why we need our churches, our small groups, and our SLA’s. These are some of the powerful places that the mystery of God is revealed.

I believe this blog is a true SLA to me, because I learn so much from your comments. Every one of you: shares your faith, offers an experience, or finds a new way to interpret the post for the day. I love that! I join St. Paul in praying for you with joy, for your blog-friendship and generosity of Spirit.

I thank my God whenever I think of you; and every time I pray for all of you, I pray with joy, remembering how you have helped to spread the Good News from the day you first heard it right up to the present.

I am quite certain that the One who began this good work in you will see that it is finished when the Day of Christ Jesus comes.         Philippians 1:3-6

Linking today with: Bible Love Notes, Faith Filled Fridays, Essential Fridays

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