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Silence – A Reflection

May 17, 2020

As I prepared for tonight’s worship service and message I was thinking about a lot of things. The theme was being led by the Spirit through whatever we are experiencing or have experienced in life. One of the things which kept bubbling up as I reflected and then offered the message was the concept of love. You know… love God with all of your heart, mind, and soul… love your neighbor as yourself. But then I had to focus on the other part of Jesus’ law… love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you. Ouch!

One of the things that I have observed as we enter the tenth week of virtual worship and sheltering-in-place or safer-at-home is the need for that silence. I crave that silence as I seek to be a shepherd in these times of turmoil. Yes, the silence is also helpful as I continue my on-line seminary class.

Again and again as we walk the same route for our daily or near daily walks I am struck by the gifts received each day. When we slow down and walk silently in a contemplative fashion, Spirit speaks to us as only She can. Same route yet different gifts if we are only aware enough to see them. Today Denise looked up and we spotted this beautiful little bird on a wire.

Such a gift to receive for both of us. But it was only by being attentive in the silence, while blocking out the sounds of cars and tourists, that we were able to receive this gift.

Tonight we have been enjoying music from various friends (Nadine Sekerez, Clay Rose, and Martin Zellar). Their music is soothing and is such a gift. Even when listening to music you have to distinguish between music as background (you know, folks talking above the music at the Winery or wherever musicians may be playing) and music as the focus of your attention. Tonight it was music as a focus and as a gift.

Silence can be like that. For a long time I avoided silence because I was afraid of what I might find in the midst of that silence. After all, in silence I had to face myself, warts and all, in a way that could be quite uncomfortable. However, the further I find myself walking this pathway of life, the silence is where I can truly Be Still and Know that God is God.

Thomas Merton wrote a beautiful piece about the gift of silence in Conjectures of a Guilty Bystander.

I beg you to keep me in this silence so that I may learn from it

the word of your peace

and the word of your mercy

and the word of your gentleness for the world:

and that through me perhaps your word of peace may make itself known

where it has not been possible for anyone to hear it for a long time. (p. 178)

Dear reader, may we learn from the music which touches the soul… may we learn from the silence and wonder of nature… may we learn about peace, mercy, gentleness, and love from the Spirit. May we learn and may we grow.

One Comment
  1. Reblogged this on Anniegoose's Blog and commented:
    Peace and Blessings to all.

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