by Jill A. Williams
Quite often, in those times where nothing much seems to be happening – where you’re drowning in a lack of hope, or even just energy to get through the day – we feel that we don’t know what to say to God. So what do we do in those times of neutrality, nothingness and silence – when we just don’t know what to do? Perhaps some fresh perspective is what you need…
The Art of Silence
“Like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth.” (Isaiah 53:7) Jesus remained silent when the world attacked him with accusations. This wasn’t an easy feat – it took great trust. Trust that he learnt in the solace of prayer.
There is comfort and beauty in silence. Jesus often went to be by himself to pray. This usually occurred in the early morning hours, when all was still. I believe that Jesus found great joy in those moments, as he got to spend the first hours of the new day in intimate communion with his Father. Jesus shows us, through his life, how we should live: even before his suffering and death, he took time to be alone and to pray. We, therefore, need to learn the art and obedience of silence, so that we too may encounter the depths of Divine fellowship.
Work in Progress
“The Lord is in his Holy Temple; let all the earth be silent before him.” (Habakkuk 2:20) Have you ever thought that the earth might be reacting to God being at work? “He who watches over you will not slumber” (Psalm 121:3) God is always at work, and even when everyone saw the tomb and thought Jesus was gone forever, he was at work; claiming victory over death and sin. Silence tends to catch people off guard because it seems like the passive option, but it’s generally the option of quiet strength and honour.
When you feel like nothing much is happening in your life, it is probably a sign that you are in a season of preparation. Not all seasons of preparation are eventful…some move at snail’s pace and feel like you’re drained and ‘going nowhere slowly.’ In this case, the difficulty you might have is with believing that God is still working in your life, that he still cares, that he’s still THERE. However, little do we know that the seeds you and those around you have sown, (words spoken, work done, etc. in the past) are taking root and manifesting themselves in your life.
The Good Christian
Here’s a solution that I’ve come to learn…TRUST GOD, DO GOOD. Trust God by believing that “…all things work together for the good of those that love him…” (Romans 8:28) and feed yourself with the Word of God – even when you’re not in the mood to, (especially then!) That is what will give you the stamina you need in order to make it through each day.
Another important thing, which I’ve learnt from a wise woman of God, is that during those dry-spells, you need to do ‘good’. As you wait on God through prayer and meditation in your heart, gift others with goodness. That’s right, you need to help other people while you’re awaiting God’s help.
Melodies from Heaven
An amazing tool God has blessed us with, to carry us through such seasons, is the gift of music. God can use it to bring you the energy of joy and awe for him in even your dullest moments. One hymn expresses his generous love beautifully:
Oh the love of my Lord is the essence
Of all that I love here on earth.
All the beauty I see
He has given to me
And his giving is gentle as silence.
So today, my prayer for you is to trust that the silence you feel from God, will be the tool he uses to thrust you into greater depths of his love. May you look beyond yourself and the pace at which your life is moving and focus your gaze on the beauty of the Giver, the One whose arms remain outstretched for you, to embrace you.