The Rheostat


When Daughter #2 was born, I had the luxury of being a stay-at-home mom. Her sister, and only sibling, turned sixteen and got her driver’s license just a few months after she was born. So, I had a lot of time on my hands to devote to the baby. I knew this would be my last child so I read all the parenting books and nurtured her learning from the get go. As a matter of fact, I placed headphones on my tummy and played Mozart and Beethoven to her in utero. Yes, I was “one of THOSE” moms.

Daughter #2 was precocious. She could READ the alphabet at seventeen months. She knew the names of all her body parts, by their anatomical terms. She spoke complete sentences early. She was a beast! Fierce. Determined. Focused. I had flash cards on the wall by the changing table. We would talk about what it was and what it meant and how you spell it and how you pronounce it.

Because of all this exposure to knowledge, this baby was powerfully curious. She pointed at everything and wanted to know what it was, how it worked, and what you used it for. One afternoon, I caught her staring intently at something from her high chair. I followed her gaze. She was looking at the dimmer switch. Soon she looked at me and asked “Whassat?” It was her FAVORITE question! She asked it hundreds of times a day.

I explained to her that it was a dimmer switch, but the thing that makes it work is called a rheostat. I took her outside and showed her the electric lines coming into the house. I told her about electricity. And I told her how a rheostat slows down or speeds up the waves in the electricity and that changes the light from dim to bright to dim at will. After that, wherever we went, she demanded to know if our host or hostess had a rheostat. My friends rolled their eyes at me. “Would you let her be a kid, for crying out loud?” I should have, probably. My daughter struggled because the other kids just didn’t “get” her. She had trouble relating to kids her own age. She’s turned out fine…it just wasn’t easy for her.

Life can be like a rheostat. We can turn up the frequency and shine light out into the world. Or we can turn it down and sit in the dark. There’s something really cool about the light, though. Darkness cannot overcome the light. Only light can overcome darkness. Keep shining your light out into the world. Keep the darkness at bay. Constantly tell the enemy he is not welcome here. Show him your light. Tell him Who you get that light from. Send him packing. Remember your rheostat when you feel down…and turn it up! ❤️

“When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.””
‭‭John‬ ‭8:12‬ ‭NIV‬‬


4 thoughts on “The Rheostat

  1. it’s a constant effort for me. I’m either shining too bright, or skipping social situations because I don’t want to risk over-nerding somehow. I’ve always been very inquisitive and just assume others are like-minded, lol. A hard balance to strike, for me.

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