10 AM, Sunday.
The stillness, the silence, it’s palpable. Greatest silence I can remember in this place.
Solitude makes an intrinsic component. And clear all-blue sky. And absence of breeze out there, whitened pine boughs moving not even a quiver. Blue-shadowed snow stands trackless and smoothed by past wind drifts. Even the sparkles sprinkled over its sculptings stand still in the light. Traffic has been nearly nil. The roads are ice-blotched, the air deep frozen. Humankind must all be curled under covers inside walls, or hunched under shawls or sweaters, silently sipping hot mugs.
But there is more to this hush than that. I’m sure.
It is mesmerizing. And I am so blessed.
I have done little, very little, so as to gather the stillness into my arms, into my soul. If only it can stretch out longer. Maybe it can?…
I’ll write no more right now. For that itself is a sort of talk, of non-silence.
To savor: Silence till “Sext”—well, according to daylight savings time, at least.
He’s back from the prison, where he fill-in preached at the Protestant inmates’ service. We’ve both already stilled all the way into a before-dinner nap. Now we sit at table, watching steam rise from comfort of pot roast with carrots, potatoes… plain winter warm food. And between the clicking of the forks I ask him, how he might have been aware of the working of God in the morning.
(For “aware” seems to be emerging as my “one word” for this year.)
And immediately he says, The responsiveness. The silence.
Even the CO’s (correctional officers) in the back of the room and those back-seat-takers usually chatting amid the sermon, all were “quiet as a mouse,” he said. Stiller than ever.
He had time for a sort of very personal invitation at the end of his talk, for individual hearts to relate with God alone, him not even looking up for any hands or nods—or tears. But he knew somehow that things were happening… because of the depth of silence… and because he’d been standing there praying for God’s moving, if only in one human heart.
Which matched exactly what I’d been moved to pray back at home!
So still here. So still way up there. Prayer in sync, without our knowing…
A true Holy Hush it surely must have been—which can come only from God Himself.
So thankful I am that we ourselves were still enough to hear it, feel it.
Truly, God’s Spirit moves in silence. Truly, His universe-big voice, in speaking to us, is still and small. Our part is but to still ourselves and listen.
“The LORD was not in the wind; … the LORD was not in the earthquake; … the LORD was not in the fire; …[but] after the fire a still small voice …” -1 Kings 19:11-13