Over the last few months, I’ve been struggling with silence. Back in January I was diagnosed with a nodule on my vocal chords. My voice had been hoarse and I had been coughing a lot. The doctor right away prescribed three weeks of voice rest. As in no speaking. As in keeping my mouth shut. Being a massive extrovert, you can imagine just how hard it was.
It was interesting too because I came up with the idea of carrying around a white board. I used a dry erase marker and tried to communicate that way. A few things I noticed: I was a slow writer and had sloppy penmanship. Not just that, but I wrote slower than people read or listened. It caused us all to have to slow down to communicate. It caused me to listen more. I also caused me to think through what I wanted to say. I had to think of words I could spell correctly (and I’m a horrible speller). I had to refrain from tossing in Star Wars or Monty Python quotes. I had to write in such a way that my children could read and understand. I had to communicate in such a way that conveyed what I wanted to say within the confines of the white board.
In effect, I was live tweeting my life on a white board.
After my three weeks of silence, I began voice therapy. And then I had a check up. The nodule had shrunk. Voice rest worked. Yet that wasn’t the only thing that happened as well.
I learned much during my time of silence. I learned about ruthlessly eliminating hurry from my life. I rush from here to there, always talking, always thinking, always doing but never always just being.
And God calls us to be. Just as much as he calls us to do, to serve Him in Jesus’ name, He calls us to be.
This “be”ing is called abiding.
Jesus says to his disciples
“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” John 13:5
In order to truly show that we belong to Jesus, we need to abide, to remain in Him, to spend our time with Him, to just be with Him.
This is something I learned while being silent. I had to be. I had to stop and listen. I had to stop and think. It made me want to stick closer to Jesus than ever before because I was now silent before Him even in my prayers.
So, how can you be silent with Jesus? How can you ruthlessly eliminate hurry from your life today? Silence truly is golden when spending it remaining and abiding in Jesus.