Julie Lyles Carr: Sunday Selah

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Sunday Selah

 8 I will listen to what God the LORD will say;
       he promises peace to his people, his saints—
       but let them not return to folly.

 9 Surely his salvation is near those who fear him,
       that his glory may dwell in our land.
 10 Love and faithfulness meet together;
       righteousness and peace kiss each other.
 11 Faithfulness springs forth from the earth,
       and righteousness looks down from heaven.
                                   Psalm 85:8-11

We live in a noisy world.  Noisy as a result of our cities and vehicles and construction and traffic, noisy by design as a result of music in every store, televisions blaring in the restaurants, radios cranked.  Auditory stimulation is the norm.  Quiet is unfamiliar.
I live in a noisy home.  The sound output of eight children, from baby cries to teenage phone calls, makes for a joyous cacophony.  Some appliance seems to always be running, computer games beep and whir, conversations and debate sprinkle the halls.  Noise.
I am unused to quiet.
I used to love quiet.
I find myself reaching for the radio dial when I get in the car.  I find myself picking up the phone if the kids are napping or playing.  I find myself sabotaging the little gifts of quiet I am given from time to time.  And in so doing, I miss the opportunity to listen.
Listening in the quiet.  Listening when there seems to be no noise.  Listening beyond the confines of my inner dialog.
I so often say I want to hear the Lord, to hear Him speak, to feel the temblor of the Divine in the marrow of my soul's bones.  But I then won't shut up.  Won't quiet my heart.  Won't quiet the noise around me.  Won't learn to feel the discomfort of the quiet to press through to the comfort of the quiet.
I want to listen.
In working with 4 of 8, the Lord has shown me that we are all His hearing impaired kids.  He has been dealing with Auditory Verbal Therapy from the Garden.  Eve didn't listen, Israel wouldn't listen.  Abba says so often in the Word, "Listen, O Israel,"  "Hear Me".  And we, His kids, listen to the news, listen to our peers, listen to Pharoah, listen to the grumblers, the doubters, the crowd.
And oh the blessing in hearing His voice.  Promises, wisdom, purpose, all contained in the power of His voice.  
So I'm reminded again, reminded to not avoid the quiet, to not fill it with my voice, my music, my news.  Reminded to get still.  Reminded to press through the restlessness.  Reminded to be quiet.
And to listen.
To listen to the quiet.  To find His voice in the whisper.
11 The LORD said, "Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the LORD, for the LORD is about to pass by."
      Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. 12 After the earthquake came a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper.
                                    1 Kings 19:11-12

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