Pic from Flickr by schmillblick
It is very possible to live your whole life apart from complete silence. With people talking, electronic buzzing, alarms, beeps, TV, radio, iPods, it is quite difficult to be silent. I know people that have said that they cannot work, or read without music. I also know people who say that they cannot go to sleep apart from music or having the TV on.
We have programmed ourselves to constantly need sound. We have somehow trained our brains to think that being alone, being quiet, and silence are all bad.
I believe there is a direct connection in people needing to be distracted by sound and people saying that they have trouble hearing from God.
What seems to be the problem? Are people afraid of silence?
I believe that it goes much deeper than that. People are not necessarily afraid of the silence but what happens in the silence.
Let’s take a snapshot out of Elijah’s life. In 1 Kings 19, we find Elijah in a cave in a mountain. He had just had an incredible victory and fled when the queen sent a death threat to him. God calls to Elijah and tells him to come out of the mountain. There is a strong wind but God was not in the wind. There was an earthquake and the Lord was not in the earthquake. There was also a fire but God was not in the fire. Then something happens. God whispers.
Perhaps we have difficulty hearing from God because God is whispering and we cannot hear Him through all the endless noise.
In prayer and in a quiet conversation, God does not get our attention by:
- Yelling at us
- Flashing neon signs
- Screaming through a bullhorn
- Calling down thunder and lightning
- Waving at us and jumping up and down
Nope. God whispers.
If we truly want to hear from God, we have to make ourselves able to hear him. How? Kill the distractions.
- Turn off the smartphone
- Turn off the TV
- Turn off the XBox
- Turn off the radio or iPod
- Stop talking
Stop talking? Yes. So many times we go into prayer and conversation with God and we control the conversation and then we cut out and end the prayer before we give God time to talk to us. Don’t be in such a hurry. Slow down. Be still. Be silent. Let God speak.
When God whispers, He will show you what is in you that does not conform to the image of Christ. You will be brought to the end of your self. The old self dies, the spirit lives. When you are praying, ask God how He wants you to change. Let God show you how your life should fall in line with His will. Let Him guide you where He wants you to go. The time that you spend with God in prayer and conversation is not so that God can do your will but so you can do His.
Really seek God. Turn off the noise. Let it be quiet and as you enter into His presence remember He whispers.