We live in a world of noise. The noise is the result of the actual noise of life like the traffic in the streets to the television in the living room to our children down the hall. There is a constant dull roar of noise that surrounds us.
Not only do we have the actual noise of life, but we also have all the “noise” of the activities and responsibilities of life. We have the “noise” of our jobs, the “noise” of our hobbies, the “noise” of our relationships, and the “noise” of entertainment. This is not to say that these things are bad things, but they do make it difficult to concentrate on anything else, including God’s voice.
With all the noise in the world, it is hard to hear God’s voice. Whether that voice is Bible or the quiet leading of the Holy Spirit, the noise of our lives often drowns out the voice of God.
It is interesting that God often called people into the wilderness, into the quiet, in order to communicate with them. God called Abraham to leave the metropolis of ancient Babylon to become a wilderness wanderer. God brought Israel out of the urban centers of Egypt and into the wilderness of Sinai to communicate His Law to them. David discovered God and developed a heart for Him while watching the sheep in the wilderness. The apostle Paul, after his conversion, was called into the desert, where he heard from Christ Jesus. For the disciple of Jesus Christ, quiet is an essential part of our lives, but it is a part of our lives that we have to be intentional about creating.
There are three reasons why I think quiet is so essential to our lives of faith.
- To add depth to our prayers. Prayer is a vital part in hearing from God, and it often takes an intentional disconnection from the “noise” of life to discover just how important prayer is to life. Many of us have experienced the flat and shallow prayer life that comes from being distracted by noise. It is hard to concentrate on talking to and hearing from God when our minds and hearts are full of the noise of this world. Quiet offers us the opportunity to connect with God away from all the distractions.
- To add depth to our reading. The key to reading Scriptures is meditation. If we are not meditating on what we read in the Bible, then God’s Word is going to pass through us without making any difference. Meditation is what takes our reading from just looking at words on a page, to making those words an actual part of our lives. Quiet is essential for meditation. Without quiet it is next to impossible to concentrate on the words we that we read, let alone make them a part of our lives.
- To add depth to our worship. It is great that we can worship God by singing songs. Music has away of leading our thoughts and minds to where they need to be. I think that is one reason God created music for us to enjoy. With that being said, I think it is easy to let our worship to push us into a rut so it becomes all about singing certain songs, raising our hands, and building up emotions in our hearts. Unplugging from the music, and embracing the quiet, can help us focus on qualities of God that we normally miss. Writing a poem, painting a picture, or planting a garden can all be forms of worship when the activity helps us focus on God.
The noise of life often distracts us from worshipping God and hearing His voice. Pursuing the quiet is the cure for the noise that plagues our lives. This requires unplugging from technology, disengaging from entertainment, and seeking solitude. It is in the quiet, as we wrestle with the questions of life through prayer, meditation, and worship that we open our hearts to the voice of God.
Do you want to hear from God? Seek the quiet spaces of life.