As an extreme extrovert, people lover and external processer silence doesn’t come easy to me. In fact silence is pretty much the antithesis of who I am. I thrive on words and sound. And yet….
When I was in high school the Lord began to birth in me a hunger for silence. Not all the time, mind you, but just every so often. I found that if I went long period of over exposure to the loudness of life that I would begin to hear only the chorus of chaos. At the time I didn’t realize that this was the hunger within me or that God had crafted me to need silence.
People always laugh when I tell them that I played golf in high school. Some people even argue it isn’t a sport…I want to see them walking 9 holes carrying their bag at least 3 days a week and playing 18 holes at least twice a week… then they can tell me it isn’t a sport. Anyways, I played golf in high school. It started as a way to be involved and to be close to my dad and papa but then something was sparked in me, a love of the silence.
Golf can be a very lonesome sport. It takes concentration. It takes mental strength. It takes dedication. But it also takes silence. Not just silence like I’m learning how to not talk all the time but a silence of mind. Learning to silence all your other thoughts, to turn off the worry and stress and just to be. It was about the shutting out all else and focusing on the rhythm. Head down, eye on the ball, arm straight, swing, finish. If any piece is missing the whole shot is wrong.
In high school the quiet moments of hearing just the rustle of the wind through the trees quieted the voices wrestling within me. The voices of fear and insecurity. The voices of the enemy.
I didn’t know it then but the Lord was beginning to craft within me a desire for this silence. Fast forward through all of high school and into college. Fast forward through financial issues, broken hearts, loving and losing. Fast forward through faith and fear, through obedience and desire.
Fast forward through time to today.
Today I recognize that I have always been made to desire this silence and solitude. We all were made for this silence and solitude. Why? Because in learning to be silent we are creating space for the Lord to speak. And if we silence all else, He will be found. A few months ago I wrote this poem as the Lord was reminding me of this hunger for silence. My prayer is that as you realize the choatic chorus echoing in your ears that you would seek to learn to go to the silence to hear His voice.
Silence used to threaten me, the voices hiding just beneath.
Fear gripped me at what would be revealed. The truth, my dirt, the darkness of my soul.
Slowly, light penetrated the darkness. Shame was revealed and grace was infused.
Light replaced darkness. Truth replaced lies.
The clamor of voices quietly subsided.
Silence, once taunted me now embraces me. Silence enfolds me in His presence. When all else is stripped away, it is He and me and nothing else.
Comfort, joy, peace, tranquility.
Silence, the stillness where He is found.
Psalm 46:10 “He says, ‘Be still, and know that I am God.'”