But when you pray, go away by yourself, shut the door behind you, and pray to your Father in private. Then your Father, who sees everything, will reward you.~Matthew 6:6 NLT
The night before my interview, I couldn’t sleep.
The potential employer reserved a hotel room on acres of beautiful backcountry, away from the hustle and bustle of the city. You might say nervousness and excitement contributed to my insomnia, but the primary source of my sleeplessness came from the tranquil surroundings.
I grew up a few blocks from the railroad tracks and main road. Train whistles, metal wheels as they spun against the rail, police sirens, ambulances, and general traffic played my bedtime lullaby. To go from perpetual noise to silence proved difficult; my mind couldn’t relax.
Today, we are surrounded by constant noise from the TV, mobile phone, traffic, the people around us, etc. I would venture to say we’ve adapted to distractions in our conscious and unconscious lives.
There is a multitude of opinions and studies about silence. Many of them say the brain needs silence to meditate, contemplate, and illuminate the mind. I found it interesting that silence increases cell regeneration in the brain (SpringerLink, 2013).
It’s not a coincidence cell creation, cell healing, and God are all found in silence. Through personal experience, when I don’t isolate myself and remove ambient noise, it’s difficult to hear God’s voice.
Be still and know that I am God!~Psalm 46:10 NLT
Luke 5:16 tells us Jesus left his disciples often to spend time with his Father. The significance of this verse and others that tell us He withdrew or spent time in solitude reveals the importance of communing with God. I remind myself regularly that the adversary, Satan, does his best to destroy my relationship with my heavenly Father by creating noise and distraction. It’s not coincidental when my phone rings or a text alert goes off just as I get myself quiet with God. My attention deficit is attributed to years of living a fast-food type of life where every distraction requires immediate recognition.
…In quietness and confidence shall be your strength.~Isaiah 30:15 NKJV
Success involves intentional effort and steadfastness. To silence the phone, put it out of reach, turn off email alerts, create a sign for the door, Devotion Time in Progress, or ask your spouse to care for the kids, are all simple things we can do. Like any meaningful relationship, commitment and devotion are required and necessary to have a close relationship with God. Changing behavior is best achieved with baby steps until the routine becomes second nature.
Silence and stillness are more difficult today than ever before, but God will bless the effort, so never surrender.
What in your life distracts you away from God, and what can you do to remedy the situation?
Heavenly Father, I pray for a special anointing on this room. Let Your presence create a barrier that distractions cannot penetrate. Quiet my heart and mind, so I can hear and know Your voice. Rejuvenate my strength and spirit to live each day for You.
In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Copyright 2021: Sacred Silence: Irene Wintermyer: All Rights Reserved