Enjoy The Silence

I'm having one of those days when it feels like I have a lot more questions than answers when it comes to God.  

My training and education tell me that I am processing loss--struggling through it, searching for answers.  I've read the books and taken the classes on all of this--six years worth of higher level learning.  

But then again, nothing teaches like experience.  

I've had my fair share of shouting matches with God over the years.  In a strange way, I feel like God likes it when we get angry and mix it up with God.  Maybe it's just me, but I've always felt heard after one of my angry tirades with the Almighty.  

Over the past few months, however, I have found that I can't seem to summon the energy to be truly angry or to lament to God about my struggles.  I started to feel like the answers weren't going to come--at least not in the way I wanted them.  

I felt like God had gone silent on the topic of my grief and sadness.  I felt like God wasn't speaking in response to my questions.  

And then I read this amazing line from the late philosopher Alan Watts: 
If I just yell a monotone yell with no rhythm to it at all, it won't be long until you tell me to cut it out. It's annoying--nobody wants to hear that... What we long to hear is the gap, the break.  Those silences create the rhythm, and more complex patterns of silences create even more interesting rhythms. 
It occurs to me that as frustrating as God's silences might seem, they may be the very thing that we need.  There is a rhythm that is created in the silences, a rhythm that invites us to enter into the music that is playing and let ourselves be carried along by the song being sung.  

And it is in the silences that we often hear what the old prophet Elijah might have known as the "still, small voice of God." The ancient Hebrew words would describe it as a "sound of sheer silence."  

When Elijah experienced that silence, he knew instinctively that God was in it.  And it was only when Elijah acknowledged the God-rhythms created by the silence that he was finally able to truly hear the voice of God, speaking, singing and carrying him along.  

May you find solace in the silences today.  May you rest in the quiet when it feels as though there are no answers to your questions and no words to comfort your spirit.    And may you finally feel the rhythms of the song that is being sung over you by the Creator and Sustainer of your life, both now and forever.

And may the grace and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you now and always. Amen.    


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