Taking Time For Silence — Morning Devotions - Hope 103.2

Taking Time For Silence — Morning Devotions

It feels like in our today's society, taking time for silence is something most people don't practice. But it can be incredibly beneficial.

By Chris WittsFriday 29 Sep 2023Morning Devotions with Chris WittsFaithReading Time: 1 minute

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Charles Ringma has written a marvelous book called ‘Wash the Feet of the World with Mother Teresa’. What this Book does, is it takes a look at the life of this famous Christian woman, Mother Teresa, and talks about her work worldwide amongst the poor and destitute. Now, Mother Teresa said many things, and she believes or believed rather in the simplicity of life. And she lived out that philosophy, of course, and died a poor woman.

But there’s one quote in the book that I particularly like. This is what it is, she said. “Listen in silence, because if your heart is full of other things, you cannot hear the voice of God.” Now I think that’s a great statement. Listen in silence, because if your heart is full of other things, you cannot hear the voice of God. And here’s this thought today of listening to God. Is it possible to actually hear God speaking to you? Can we learn to listen to him?

So here’s an experiment, you could try some time.

Be as still and as silent as you can for the next 30 seconds or so, and listen as you can, noticing what you hear. Like what sounds are there. You can close your eyes. You can stop. Did you hear anything? Did you hear the ticking of a clock, perhaps? Or the noise of a heater or birds or traffic or your own breath? Your heartbeat. Did you hear any ringing in your ears? Well, our problem today is that we suffer from what’s called noise pollution that business of sound, constant sound. It bombards us day and night, and if it’s deadly quiet, we can’t stand it. So we switch on the TV or radio. Is it because we’ve become addicted to noise? Even in church, for example, The minister, he asks, He or she asks for a time of silence to pray. And often we sit there feeling very uncomfortable. We don’t like silence.

And often we use noise to cover up our real feelings. And, as we do that, I think we can avoid the moments when the Lord may be saying something to us. Is there an inner longing to connect with God? I believe there is. Let me tell you about a lady called Catherine. Catherine, she was aged 67. She was the widow of a doctor, a man who had died a regular church goer. He had led a successful life and and she had, too. But there was something wrong. She was disturbed in her thinking. She went to a counsellor, and she complained that something wasn’t quite right, and she wanted to get to the bottom of it. She’d been a traveler. She’d been around the world, being an active volunteer. She had lots of friends, had grandchildren who loved to spend time with her. She was in good health, and the council was just a bit puzzled and thought, perhaps you’re suffering depression. No, she said. I’m just killing time to amuse myself.

And although she was busy, there was something missing. And this is what she said. You know, I’ve kept very busy all my life. I’ve always had something to do somewhere to go and somebody to be with. But now, she said, I don’t want any of that. I don’t enjoy anything. Lately, I’ve begun to withdraw from many of the things that I like, and my friends and family are becoming worried about me and to be honest, I don’t think I’m depressed. It’s just that underneath it all, I have a feeling that there’s more to life than I have experienced. I just can’t seem to get in touch with this.

The feeling of something more

I go to church Sunday morning, Wednesday night, and I have for years, she said. I’ve taught Sunday school for the past 26 years, but sometimes church isn’t speaking to me the way that I’m feeling.

So what’s going on? The council said between you and God and she said, well, there’s nothing going on. There are times, she said. When I really wonder if there is a God at all. Yet there are other times that I crave for God. I just can’t seem to make the connection.

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You know, she said, I want to experience God. It’s as though I’ve been behaving well and I’ve been working for someone that I’ve read about, heard about, but never actually met.

Now I find that an interesting story because Thomas Merton said once that silence is the first language of God, all else is a poor translation. God said, if only my people would listen to me. That’s in Psalm 81:13 and God does speak to us. And I think listening to God is one of the most important things that you can ever do. So why not try listening to him, listening to the voice of God and he can speak in all sorts of ways.

Let’s Pray

Well, Heavenly Father, today we thank you that our ways are not your ways. May it be true, Lord, that you will help us to listen with our ear and our heart to what you’re saying this day, I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.