Sunday, July 22nd was the first time I’d felt God’s presence in months…okay, years. It has been a rough, raw, anguished time…full of some of the most joyful events in my life: new love, new marriage, new baby! But without God’s sweet presence, I’ve suffered sorely. It seems God just left…no goodbye note, nothing…just up and left me…alone…with my wonderful new life. I’ve spent my time on the floor crying to Him, begging Him to fill me up, to make Himself known. NA-DA. Nothing. Nothing. Nothing in response.
So, why the sudden reappearance from God? Why, after all my begging, did He suddenly grace me with it? Well, I was quiet…for the first time in months…okay, years.
I found this silence in a room filled with hundreds of other worshippers. The message for the day was SILENCE. Now, this is not a new message to me. I have a pretty good grip on quieting my life…limiting auditory and visual media…sitting outside…in silence. I am committed to my daily “quiet time” with God. What changed?
I was quiet…truly quiet…in body and spirit. In all my “quiet times” before God…I was pursuing Him…chasing Him…reading His word…talking to Him. I never thought to sit before Him. I’m embarrassed to admit, my idea of prayer involves ME talking TO God. Hmmm. The Pastor had to spell it out for me…”Talking involves listening.” Oooops. It has never occurred to me, before this past Sunday, to STOP and LISTEN after my “amen”.
But how to quiet my spirit? I am an introvert so being quiet only opens me to the world inside my head…the rich, full world of “dialogue” (between me and me), of dreams, of ideas, of…oh, everything! Since I live in my head, it’s a pretty happenin’ place. Then I remembered…a few years ago, when Chuck was in the hospital, a stethoscope came into my possession. The first time I used it on myself, I was utterly undone…the sound of my own heart…my lifeblood coursing through my body…completely outside of my control. It humbled me before the creator of my life…my heart was beating…without me telling it to do so. My heart was beating…without my instructions for how to beat and when to beat…it was beating.
My answer…to quiet myself before God…to hear…to connect? I listen for sound of my beating heart.