What happens in the silence
Getting up earlier to sit (read, journal, listen) in silence took some getting used to. I started small, with ten minutes, then fifteen, then eventually nearly an hour as I grew ever more dependent on morning stillness for calm and courage.
What happens in that silence? Well first and foremost, a lot of letting go.
I awake with a head full of fears and an ego inflamed with the passions. I need stillness to separate my identity from these fears and passions- they are not me, I am not them.
The silence creates space for observation, where I can name and identify my anxieties and self-centered perspectives and then intentionally surrender them to God.
It is a daily purging of the biases, expectations, and negative self-talk that stir up inner turbulence- a daily journey from my noisy head to my quiet heart.
Stillness helps me embrace change instead of resisting it, and patiently endure what feels uncertain and unresolvable. I’m seeking Christ in the silence, not answers- just His presence, and plugging into the source of all peace and discernment.
Empty and receptive, I return to a childlike state of trust and wonder. All that befalls me becomes infused with eternal significance- all of it for my salvation, all of it an opportunity to grow in faith and love.
To wait with openness and trust is an enormously radical attitude toward life. It is giving up control over our future and letting God define our life.
- Henri Nouwen
What happens in the silence is a defiant act of hope in God’s omnipotence and mercy, spilling generously onto all of us, if only we are still enough to recognize it and accept it via the trials and loving connections that purify our souls.
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