Editor’s Note: The following is part 1 of a live Crowdcast talk on Waiting in the Silence by Tammi McCarthy and Bridget Holtz. Read and watch part 2 by Bridget here. These talks are part of a 4-week Revival Series on desert fruits presented by our discipleship team.
When we retreat from the noise of the world in silence, we gain a new perspective in the world.”Cardinal Sarah
When we think about our desert experience, we have to create the accurate description of this environment. I like to think about the dryness of the air, the quiet, the lack of people and noise. In the desert, we have the opposite of the “life” of the city. No lights, no traffic, no noise, just the desert air and endless miles of dirt. There is an intensity of loneliness and quiet. It is the perfect opportunity for us to “encounter” the Lord.
Why Do We View Silence So Negatively?
Because I think we value noise. We have come to value that which silences God, placing the utmost importance on drowning out not only our own inner thoughts but the voice of Him who speaks the language of our hearts. We have come to value that which separates us from God in a very basic and underestimated way.
Our World no longer hears God because it is constantly speaking, at a devastating speed and volume, in order to say nothing.”CARDINAL SARAH
It is my conclusion that we equate silence with inactivity. Sitting in periods of quiet are not only perceived as “lazy” but also as “wasting time.” Why be silent when we could be listening to something? We have come to see silence as a negative thing. Multitasking with constant distractions can be a tool by the devil to keep us from quieting our hearts. As long as we have distractions, we will never enter into periods of calmness. We will never have time with the Lord to be restored.
Why Do We Avoid Silence?
Many of us fear the Lord’s voice and really quieting our hearts. We don’t like the vulnerability that comes with quieting our thoughts. These periods of quiet may lead us to become introspective and find real areas of our hearts that need our attention and healing. It is easier to escape or silence God’s voice than to embrace that which our heart desires. We stuff our feelings and concern way down into our hearts until we become numb. We shut out those quiet voices of love and truth that the Lord wishes to speak to our heart.
What Are the Fruits of Silence?
- Physical calming of the body….lower our heart rate, calm our breathing, relax our body.
- Mental calming: clear our mind of anxious thoughts and burdens that lead to headaches and stress.
- Deeper reflection on our own thoughts.
- Vulnerability with the Lord
- Uninterrupted time with the Lord
What Are Ways to Practically Observe Times of Silence?
- While driving in our cars
- Taking a shower, or bath at the end of the day
- Doing a household chore
- Taking a walk
- Laying in bed before you go to sleep, or after you wake up.
Also, read Tammi’s Blog on the Calming Power of Silence.