Have you ever shouted in a tunnel or bellowed from a hilltop? What did you hear?
Chances are you heard an echo.
Sound waves are quite interesting actually. Once you speak, the sound travels outwards and toward an object, which then reflects the sound back towards you. Psychologically, your brain can pick up the sound waves from other echoes, such as a car thats far away, but you can deduce by its echo that its coming towards you or away.
There’s just something about echoes that attract us. As a child I would love walking through a tunnel and hollering, “Helllllooo. Hellllo! HELLLLLLOOOOO!” (Maybe I still do this, and most likely you still do it:P). It’s fun to hear your voice amplified and booming in a tunnel; just the same as its fun to hear your voice echo through a valley.
We live in a small valley, and my children get a kick out of opening the front door, standing on the front steps and bellowing, “Helllllllloooooo!!!! Can you hearrrr mmmeeeeee….” Much to the displeasure of our neighbours I’m sure, considering one time it was 7:00am on a Saturday morning.
The definition of an echo: a reflection of sound that arrives at the listener with a delay after the direct sound.
Just the same as an echo reflects sound back to our ears after we speak our actions and words also have a ‘echo effect’ to those around us.
You can’t get your shout back once you holler.
Sure, you’ll hear the echo of it and all, but the effect of it has already accomplished its purpose, whether for good or ill. You could have shouted at someone to “Stop!” if they were hurting someone or maybe you shouted at your child in anger because you’re stressed and they weren’t listening.
So thats what an echo is and how it works, now lets look at how it relates to another area in our lives.
I was reading my Bible today and I felt led to read Psalm 72 and Psalm 58. I haven’t read Psalm 72 in a long time, but I’ve been reading Psalm 58 all week. So as I cracked open my Bible and started reading Psalm 72 and I noticed a few interesting things.
Psalm 72 was written by King Solomon of Israel, who became king after his father, David. In verses one and two, Solomon talks about justice, “Give your love of justice to the King, O God, and righteousness to the King’s son. Help him judge your people in the right way; let the poor always be treated fairly.” He goes on further talking about the Lord blessing the King will all kinds of virtues and qualities needed to rule a Kingdom properly, and he clues up by offering praises to the Lord.
Now lets look at Psalm 58.
Psalm 58 was written by Solomons father, David. He wrote this before his son was king and possibly before David was even king. In his Psalm, David starts off the first verse with, “Do you really speak of justice, O “gods”? Do you judge with fairness, sons of man? No, in heart you devise injustice. Your hands weigh out violence on earth.” (TLV version). David gets right into the issue! He asks the question, ‘Do you even know what justice is?’ to the rulers and then continues for the next ten verses talking about injustice, how these rulers abuse authority, and that God will avenge those who are treated wrongly by those in authority,
Here is the cool part, ready?
King Solomon years later, was ‘echoing’ his fathers heart about justice in his Psalm. He was asking God to give his love of justice to himself as king, that he may do what his father, David, yearned for. Solomon’s Psalm writing style also ‘echoes’ his father style, starting off with a plea to God, followed by issues that troubled him, and ending with praise and thankfulness to the Lord.
The Son (daughter) echoes his (her) Fathers example.
I started to reflect how my own children echo my actions and words; for the better or worse. I have to be careful what I say and do. Why? Because others will feel the weight of my emotions, my words, my actions and absorb them- just like sound proofing absorbs soundwaves. I will also reap what I give out, when my echoes bounce back through my children to me, in the way that they act and speak.
God has given parents a HUGE responsibility: raising a child. Let us pray and ask God to show us how to be wise and loving parents and to ‘echo’ out the best for our children.
It’s worthy to note that an echo is also an essential human survival tool.
An echo bouncing back to you will let you know if a vehicle – which is coming around a blind turn – is getting closer to you. The sound of the vehicle getting closer to you gives your brain the valuable information to…?
Get out of the way!
A person who is lost in the woods (not Kristoff from Frozen 2) may very well depend on their voice to travel as an echo in order to be rescued. Soldiers everyday rely on their hearing. An echo from the blast of an artillery gun, or the whine of a shell closing in, can give them the time to find cover.
We give off echoes every day.
Let’s make sure they are worthy of being remembered and carried on.
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