It’s the 21st century, and we live ceiling-to-floor, wall-to-wall encased in noise. Noise emanates from our television sets and our fluorescent lights, ambulances, police cars and car stereos, rattling the ground for blocks. This noise is distracting, grabbing our attention with images on our computers, graffiti on highway overpasses and five story movie screens.
Somehow this noise is comforting as well, the rattle of the train in the distance, the screech of the breaks and voices down the hallway. It dissolves the fear and aching loneliness. We are connected, yet disconnected. We search for our own voice, fighting to be heard among the many other voices.
But what happens when we are still? Do we still long for more voices in noise? Or do we surrender to the one who’s voice comes as a whisper, quite enough to be missed amid the buzz and hum? Does this voice only come to us when we were still, when we have turned away from the din? It’s hard for us to know, trapped as we are amid too much commotion. Even our gas station pumps have voices now. We don’t get away from the clamor easily.
What would happen if we were still? Where would we be without the voices telling us what to buy, who to be, where to go? When we have been still, we have suffered awkward silence. But it is only in the silence that Wisdom whispers to us. And it is only when we are silent that we are truly able to hear.
To listen for the voice of wisdom, we must put ourselves in a place to hear Him. To do this, we must turn away from the competing voices. We must be silent before Him and wait. It is no accident that Jesus instructs us to go to our closets to speak to the Father. It is no accident that we were instructed to speak few words. He knows how much we need to hear His voice over the din. Let us learn to be still and how to be quiet. There, we can make a place to hear His voice.
Meditate on Matthew 6:5–14. Make the Lords prayer your prayer, and find a quiet place alone where you can pray through your prayer, giving the Lord ample room to speak.
Quiet my soul within me, Lord. Let my heart be stirred only by You now. I will wait for Your Kingdom, and listen to Your voice.