I have been moving toward silence.

As a teen, I always had background noise. If not music, then a TV was playing.

That began to change after my first child was born.
Then, I found myself thrilled to hear a quiet house.
I’d listen to the dishwasher run rhythmically and enjoy the rare moment of peace.

By child number two, I could no longer tolerate
even that small amount
of “white noise.”
When I got a chance at a quiet house,
I turned everything off.

I still do.
I relax in the silence.

Recently, this has bled over into my car. I used to panic when the radio would falter. Without music or audio books, how would I survive a road trip? Now, I find myself turning off the stereo as I drive.

On just a quick trip to the pharmacy, I steal a few moments of silence.

The old me sought music – certain songs – that helped me work things out in my head and heart. Now, more and more, I seek the comfort of quiet.

It may have started with my first reluctant journey
through the labyrinth. Since then,
I find myself seeking out “sacred space.”
I will retreat to the sanctuary at our church building,
when no one else is there. I like the stillness
and peace amid the pews. At the Gray Center, one spring,
I sat in a lawn chair with no watch, cell phone or computer.

I sat still for hours and it felt like Heaven.

I am learning that, in silence, I can finally hear the important things.
God can speak.
My soul can speak.
Distraction and anxiety feel okay to release their grip.
I breathe in and breathe out, and I begin to live again.

Was there silence when God created Eve?

I believe there was. Adam was asleep.
God was engrossed and enthralled by the final strokes of beauty
He was coaxing from His fingers. He lost Himself
in union with His creation, and she was born.
Thousands of years later, here I am, His own wayward Eve,
struggling back to a paradise of silence,
begging to enter Eden again and hear only His voice,
feel only His hands moving over me,
know only that I belong to Him and this is good.

This is all good.


*originally published on Middle Places


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