The house is empty. I hear the hum of the refrigerator and the ticking of the keyboard, but mostly it is a strange silence. I have not sat alone for many days.
I don’t know how to do “alone” very well. My life is so full. So noisy. And I am forever offering input, filling the spaces with my own voice.
But tonight I dwell on the words of Elisabeth Elliot: “Silence, as someone has said, is the mother of prayer and the nurse of holy thoughts. Silence cuts down on our sins, doesn’t it? We can’t be sinning in so many different ways if we are being quiet before God. Silence nourishes patience, charity, discretion.”
Yes, I need this. I long to have my patience nourished through a silent acceptance of the Father’s assignments for today . . . no quibbles about my appointed lot.
I wonder how to do this when the garage door opens and the family bursts in, full of stories and songs and energy. Can I find a still sort of silence in the cacophony that regularly marks the rhythm of a big family. And can I cultivate a sense of sanctuary in my noisy home?
The noise fills and runs deeper than sound. It is the trinkets that I trip over (quite literally) in my house. It is the catalogs that fill my mailbox. It is the clutter that crowds the basement.
This throwing off of encumbrances will take some muscle. But I want to run the race well, and in the end, I know I’ll find that in quietness and trust I will find all the strength that I need (Isaiah 30:15).
I’d love to hear how you cultivate quietness in your home or in your own hearts. If you’d like, share your thoughts as a comment below–I’d love to learn from you!