Quiet

I relish in the quiet of the early morning. In fact, I love any kind of quiet at any time of day. Silence, over the years, proves my friend. Every morning I drive my 35 minute commute in beautiful silence. I guess I’m an auditory minimalist. Too many noises, even good ones, wear on me. Incessant background noise–tv, radio, lots of voices– exhaust me. I suppose it has to do with filters; I have a hard time tuning anything out so it quickly becomes too much.

Lately, although I enjoy an abundance of silence, I’ve noticed that my being struggles to be quiet. Always churning and chewing on thoughts and emotions, both heart and mind remain a far cry from quiet. A pervasive theme throughout my life, the convergence of past hurts, present struggles and future fears set up a road-block in me and it’s a daily battle to tear it down and continue on my journey.

This morning, over coffee, I read this from Isaiah:

This is what the Sovereign Lord,
    the Holy One of Israel, says:
“Only in returning to me
    and resting in me will you be saved.
In quietness and confidence is your strength.

There’s so much noise in our world, so many things vying for our attention. How can we possibly weed it all out? And yet if we don’t–weed out the noise (sounds, sights, smells, activities)–I believe there’s the possibility we’ll miss the soul-rest that’s right there in front of us.

That verse from Isaiah? I didn’t include the last line; the complete verse reads:

This is what the Sovereign Lord,
    the Holy One of Israel, says:
“Only in returning to me
    and resting in me will you be saved.
In quietness and confidence is your strength.
    But you would have none of it.

In other versions, they translate that line as “But you refused.” or “But you were unwilling”.

We all claim to want and desire peace and yet what are we willing to do or change so that we have it? Is soul-rest right there for the taking, but because of an unwillingness on our part to simply accept it or make changes or believe it, we end up missing it? I know I do–I miss the invitation and I miss out on the rest. I know I trade quietness for the noise of the world, and I certainly trade confidence and trust for doubts and fears.

So today, once again, I pray for a willing, receptive, open heart so that I don’t miss the rest and salvation being freely offered and freely given. I pray for a constantly returning, remembering, believing heart.

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