17 April 2011

When it's Silent

On days when God is silent, I try to listen anyway. If I can't hear him, I try to listen to the sun and the wind and the little voices and the big ones, hoping that I catch a word that spans two worlds.

Lately, it's hard to hear him, and hard for me to discern his voice when something comes and I wonder. I wonder if I don't hear him because he doesn't speak, or if he's speaking and I'm too confused or afraid to hear. I wonder if the words are pouring over me, but all I hear is the wind ripping across these plains. I wonder if, somewhere in the baby's babble, are his words for me, if I could just separate them from the nonsense.

Sometimes, though, I wonder if he's just not speaking at all.

God speaks through people and music and prayer and art and dance and in more ways than I can fit into this sentence, but sometimes he's silent. I'm tempted to think that he's an introvert like me, that sometimes he just needs to step away so he can be fully present when he steps back in.

But instead, I think he knows the place of silence, knows when his presence speaks louder than any words, and when it's enough to be near. I don't think he ever speaks when there's nothing to say, and that he knows how limited words can be.

And sometimes I think that's what he wants from me in return, someone to offer presence, not because he needs it but because he wants me. Words can bring us together but they can also help us keep ourselves a safe distance apart. That distance hurts him, the one who made us because he wanted to be with us.

So on the days when it's silent, I try to listen. And if I still don't hear anything, I try to be, to pull close and curl up and sit, until there's something to say again.

7 comments:

Heather said...

I think when God is silent, he's asking, "Will you worship me now? Even when you don't hear me?"

di said...

I love this Sarah.

Melissa_Rae said...

This is so good. I like everything about it, the doubt I have in my own heart, and the truth I also need to hear.

kirsten michelle said...

I wonder, too.
xoxo


love you,
kirsten

christianne said...

I've read this post a couple times since you posted it, and I keep coming back it, not having words to offer in the silence but being present to it with you, all the same.

Your words fill up something in me and in the air around me when I read them. They're melodic and true.

xoxo,
Christianne

Laura said...

There is much that can be said (and learned) in silence. A joyful resurrection day to you and yours, Sarah! May you feel the earth move with the waking...

Joelle said...

Was it you who told me of Mother Teresa and how she experienced God's silence more than God's presence? You are in good company, dearest.