Be Silent So He Can Speak

So yesterday's verse was about calling on the Lord. (Psalm 145:18) I mentioned at the end of my short post that it's a conversation. A little fact I routinely forget when it comes to my relationship with Jesus. 

Let's trek back a few years to my initial call out to Him. I was drawn to the Lord listening to a guest speaker at youth group retreat a couple of weeks after my 14th birthday. I managed to hear God's tender whisper in the midst of playing goofy games like "Sardines", singing the likes of  "Pass It On" and an early Amy Grant favorite "My Father's Eyes", and stuffing ourselves with the first of many batches of  peanut butter "retreat" fudge my mom made for more than ten years of such events.

If I'm really honest, I don't think I fully got the picture of what I had done until much later. I took some tiny baby steps. I started reading my Bible. I went to youth group, church, choir, bell choir, and every other opportunity for spiritual growth I could find all throughout high school. 

I started praying on more occasions than the rote prayer I'd learned to recite at meals. I actually wrote some of my prayers out in my diary and tried to sound very sophisticated and flowery with my interactions, considering it was the God of the Universe and all. I watched others. I listened to them talk with God. I imitated. I copied. I thought I was getting it right, but I forgot something essential along the way until I sat on the top bunk of my college dorm room a couple years later -- I forgot to listen. 

Oh, I was practiced at the beseeching. I was well-versed on the asking, petitioning, and frequently begging for forgiveness of my sins. My request list was long and detailed--almost like a letter to Santa. What I'd taken zero time to hone was the quiet waiting. The hushed silence. The anticipation of Him carrying on the conversation once my magpie-like chattering was finished. 

Let's zip 30 + years ahead and many prayers said . . . to this moment, in which I am awaiting my next step after a job loss several weeks ago. I have been searching, praying, and sometimes lying awake at night with all the whirling thoughts that come along with what I can do, say, or conjure up to happen next. I have applied for positions, asked others to pray, and read Scripture to support my wavery spirit. 

What I still haven't done much of in this season far removed from that 14-year-old girl who knew she needed Jesus and believed He'd save her from her sins is this. 

I haven't just been quiet. I haven't given Him the chance to respond. I keep pointing out the ticking timeline and the smaller bank account. I keep giving Him ideas of what I think I should do to fill this empty space called "job" next to my societal ID card. I keep making plans and asking Him to bless them. 

I woke up this morning with words fairly dripping from my fingertips, and I could not do anything but let them spill out. I edit as I go along, which is why I grabbed my laptop rather than my preferred one of these. I get more momentum and thoughts are quicker to coagulate if I type instead of write longhand. 

But back to the verse above, I am instructed to keep silence before Him. I am part of a conversation, and while He is eager to hear from me and longs for me to seek out fellowship, guidance, and an intimate relationship with Him; He also wants to speak, to let me know His heart. The Lord I love is fully capable of carrying His end of the conversation . . . when I am quiet enough to hear His still, small voice like Elijah did here:
"Then He said, 'Go out, and stand on the mountain before the Lord.' And behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind tore into the mountains and broke the rocks in pieces before the Lordbut the Lord was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake; and after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire; and after the fire a still small voice."
I have a regular practice of  "quiet" time each morning. Today I am challenging myself, along with any of you who have made it through my ramblings, to sit down and listen, truly be silent before the Lord and await His still, small voice. He wants our silence as much as He wants us present for the conversation.

Have a lovely day!

I'll be leaving a trail of beauty.


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