Image by Mara ~earth light~ via Flickr
Too often I rush into my prayers. Listing my perceived needs and coveted wants to God like putting coins in a vending machine.
I do add some praise. I pause for a moment of gratitude. I really try to worship.
But noise fills up all the nooks and crannies of my prayers.
Mother Teresa’s words stopped me cold when I read them the other day:
The fruit of silence is prayer, the fruit of prayer is faith, the fruit of faith is love, the fruit of love is service, the fruit of service is peace.
Silence is the first step – the critical element that we can’t miss.
Many of you know the verse from Psalm 46:10: Be Still and Know I am God.
I have begun using this at the beginning of my prayers. Repeating it slowly with silence in between, dropping a word each time from the ending.
Be Still and Know I am God.
Be Still and Know I am.
Be Still and Know.
This simple mantra quiets the chattiness in my mind and brings me silently into God’s presence. The focus shifts from me- me-me to eyes only on Him.
We are bombarded with so much noise from the world and clamor from media – all distracting us from hearing God. Creating a space in my life for God begins with silence.
Did you know just about every faith tradition not only values silence, but stresses for true heart transformation the practice of silence is essential?
I have attended silent retreats and hunger to go on one again this coming spring. But I also feel a call to intentionally practice silence everyday, pausing briefly as I switch from one chore to another, stilling my heart and turning to God. I couldn’t survive only drinking water once a year while on retreat – no, I need sips throughout the day to thrive.
A couple more thoughts about silence:
Silence is God’s first language; everything else is a poor translation. In order to hear that language, we must learn to be still and to rest in God. — Thomas Keating
Nothing in the universe resembles God more than silence. Meister Eckhart
What role has silence played in your spiritual development?