Silence

Posted: August 17, 2009 in Uncategorized

prayerThere was a man who was well known for recording nature sounds.  He once said in 1968 that in order to get one hour of undisturbed sound (meaning cars, planes, etc.) it would take him 15 hours of filming.  Now, in order to get the same one hour, it would take him 2,000 hours of filming!  That’s a lot of hours!  Why is that? 

It reminds me of a story of Elijah from 1 Kings 19:11-13

 “The LORD said, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the LORD, for the LORD is about to pass by.”

      Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. 12 After the earthquake came a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper. 13 When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave.”

 We seem to think that God is going to show up in some kind of dramatic fashion.  We expect a fire, like Moses and the burning bush.  We expect a giant cloud or some earth shattering thing to happen when God talks to us.  But this story shows something different.  God speaks to in a gentle whisper, or what another translation says, “a thin silence.”

 Does that surprise you?  Have you ever thought about how much noise you are exposed to every day?  Cars, airplanes, music, television…We have cell phones with voicemail, email, mp3 players and video cameras.  We have surround sound speakers to make things louder and make sound come from all angles.  Our life is surrounded by noise.  At my house every Saturday night mariachi music is blasted from across the street.  There is even a term for too much noise…It’s called “noise pollution.”

 Do you ever feel like God is distant?  Do you ever feel like you can’t hear the voice of God?  Maybe it’s not that God is distant, but that maybe we aren’t able to hear him through all the noise and distractions of our lives.  When Jesus wanted to pray and talk to God He went to places where He could be alone and quiet.  Maybe there’s something to that.  Maybe we need to occasionally take some time to be still and try to hear the voice of God.  Maybe we should get away from all the distractions that we face everyday so that we can spend some quality time with God.

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