read to feed the soul
Written by FBJ Women for Women
by: Camille Anding
“Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him.” Psalm 37:7
“Silence is golden.” We’ve all heard this proverb that dates back as early as the 9th century. I would add that in this generation, “Silence is scarce!”
It’s not unusual for crowds of young or old to be noisy, but I’ve noticed that noise is comfortable among small groups or even individuals. The human race is addicted to sound waves traveling through “i” gadgets, TVs, radios, and intercoms. We’ve become addicted to noise devices that fill a room, a stadium, or a single set of ears.
In my observations of noise versus silence, I’ve noticed that out of all God’s creation, it’s the humans that are the biggest noisemakers. We could take some lessons from the animal kingdom. I suppose all or most animals make some sort of noise, but it’s not constant. Horses and cows graze in silence, ducks swim quietly, and kittens purr softly.
Observe a butterfly – busy gliding from one flower to the next without making a single sound in all of its activity. Bees’ tiny motors hum, but it’s a soft hum. Flowers expend much power in turning from a small bud to an open blossom but never make a sound. The morning glories that have come up volunteer near a backyard trellis will take hold of that trellis, climb it, display a drift of blooms without a single sound. Our Yoshino cherry tree deserves a grand prize blue ribbon each spring for its parade of blooms, but it does it all in total silence – doesn’t even make a whisper.
I’m convinced that we miss a lot by choosing noise over silence in so much of our day. We leave no quiet time to meditate or concentrate. There’s no space left for the still, small voice of God to speak to our hearts. F. B. Meyer said, “God’s best cannot be ours apart from the patient waiting in His holy presence.” My spirit leads me to believe this is a truth that too few Christians understand or realize.
A devotional I read recently had this anonymous statement: “The world’s mighty men have grown in solitude.” Another thought to consider is this one: “Learn the ‘art of stillness.’ It is safety, solace, strength.”
Who knows what we might learn or be inspired to do if we chose silence as a companion for at least a portion of our day? God’s word in Isaiah 30:15 reminds us of His love and concern for His children: “For thus said the Lord GOD, the Holy One of Israel, ‘In returning and rest you shall be saved; in quietness and in trust shall be your strength.’ But you were unwilling.”
It seems that the weight room is not the only place to acquire strength. A quiet corner emptied of all noise just might hold unlimited power. But are we willing?
Holy God, the One who can thunder over the universe or speak in whispers, teach us the beauty of waiting before You in silence, to meditate silently on your Word. Help us to understand that noise will always drown out a whisper. I ask in the Name of Jesus. Amen.
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