Trying to Listen

Hearing is easy. Listening is hard.

Aaron Charles
5 min readApr 7, 2016


Photo credit: Jeremy Bishop:

The alarm sounded. 5:47 am on a Wednesday. I knew I needed to get up and write. I reached for my phone as the familiar sounds of ringing and buzzing continued. Snooze. Just a few more minutes.

Thunder rolled in the distance.

I looked back at my phone. 5:52 am. Ok, I gave myself one snooze but now I really needed to get up. I needed to get back into a routine. Vacation was over. Time to get back to it.

I got out of bed quietly to keep from waking up my wife. As I made my way to the living room, bright flashes snuck through the small slits in between the the shades covering our back window. The wind whistled outside. It was storming.

I couldn’t find the iPad to do my morning writing. I looked all over the living room. “Oh, it must be on the charger back in the bedroom,” I thought. I heard rumbling outside like a host of horses galloping on a far-off field. I paused. Maybe I’ll read instead…

I grabbed the Bible and devotional book that sit on our living room bookshelf. I flipped the page to April 6. As I began to read, a sharp crack of lightning broke the early-morning silence. I wished the storm would just give me some peace and quiet to read.

I read about thankfulness. I read about focusing on God’s goodness instead of the troubles that surround us. I had heard that before. Good thoughts to start my day with, but I had other things to do. I went to go find the iPad.

I walked back into the bedroom and flipped on the flashlight on my iPhone. The lightning and the thunder hadn’t woken up my sleeping wife, but somehow that did. It was 6:23 am.

“What are you doing?” she asked, frustration clearly in her voice.

“Looking for the iPad,” I replied. “I need to write this morning.”

Just then, I noticed it above Sarah’s head. I grabbed the iPad and left Sarah to her sleep. It began to rain outside. The sound of harsh droplets hitting the roof mixed with the noise of the howling wind.

I went to sit down and start writing. Then I noticed a book on the table. The Art of Work by Jeff Goins. I’ve been slowly reading through it, but I hadn’t picked it up in a few days. I felt…



Aaron Charles

Christ-follower. Husband to @SarahLCharles. Simple moments hold great power. Connect with me at my website: