Thursday, March 7, 2013

Embracing the Silence

"For God alone my soul waits in silence; from Him comes my salvation" (Psalm 62:1).

"I need quiet!" "I can't even hear myself think!" These words of great infamy rank right up there with declarations such as "Give me  liberty or give me death," Remember the Alamo," and "Who shot JR?" These words have been uttered by parents, employees, bosses, kids, and most anyone that's worked with kids! There have been undeniable moments in our lives when the noise on the inside of heads rivaled the commotion on the outside.

Life can get loud. There are expectations that scream for attention. There are pressing engagements that demand immediate response. There are the nagging worries of the day that seem harder to shake than a fat man on a diet trying to settle for a salad at an all-you-can eat buffet! The decibels in our mind are cranked up to such a level that alarms of our sanity begin to sound in warning of imminent danger. Where do you go to escape the cycle of unending chaos? Where is the sheltering refuge when it feels like we're seeking safety from a nuclear explosion by hiding in storm cellar?

David, masterfully and lyrically penning his thoughts in Psalm 62 expresses his own heart in his search for the shelter in the storm. He find his silence (his rest, his peace, his safe place), not just in God, alone, but in the waiting for God alone. It was in this place of silent waiting did he find peace in his hope in the Lord. It was in this place he knew He was held. It was in the safety of being found in the hollow of the hands of One who shaped the mountains and formed the handiwork of all life.

David knew firsthand the noise of family dysfunction, on the job conflicts, and the inner turmoil he found fighting for life in the secret and dark spaces of mind. Yet, he knew that his soul, his mind, his will, and his emotions would find there solace in the space of waiting. It was in the waiting that he was able to hear the voice of God in the stillness and the silence of the dark. When hope seemed lost in the chaos of his unraveling kingdom, his peace was found in the silence of waiting on God, alone. That is where David found salvation, deliverance, and the promise for a renewed hope and a steadfast courage.

Is it loud? Are the voices in your head competing with the voices on the outside? Do you ever feel as though you are treading water with no raft in sight, your strength failing, and the sound of your screams fading off in the distance? He has not forgotten you. He is not ignoring you. He hears you when you call. Sometimes it takes Him allowing us to get to the place of silence before we are able to really hear Him speak. It has been said that only in silence may our prayers truly be answered. It is in that place of silent waiting that we once again realize that He is the author of our salvation. He is the One who will be the source of our deliverance. 

Find a quiet place today. Be open and honest with the God of creation with all that you are facing. Ask Him to give you the strength and the courage to shut out the raging noises of confusion, doubt, and angst. Be still and allow Him to speak. Do not give into the urge of control that would deceive you into meaningless and empty action. Don't confuse God's silence with His absence. It is in the silence that we are able to really hear. Don't resist the waiting. Embrace the silence. There you will find rest, be reminded of the closeness of His presence, and know that He is still God.

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