Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Silence

Sometimes, I love quiet. No television. No radio. No iPods blaring or Blackberries ringing. Just wonderful, blissful quiet.

Maybe it's a generational thing, but I just don't get why people want to be exposed to noise all the time. As I looked around at the track meet last week, I marveled at how many athletes were plugged into an electronic device. Maybe they were listening to just the right song to inspire a great performance. But, no, that must not be it because they were still listening when they were lounging around between events. Maybe they were getting in the zone for the next round. And yet, even when they were sleeping on the bus, they were tuned in. To what? Lullabies?

I do have an iPod--or rather, did. It went MIA somewhere along the line. Once in a while, I would shove those ear buds in my ears if I had a long road run coming or was midway on a lengthy flight. I even took it to the mountains with me a few times. But, really, I didn't care for it much.

I like quiet because it helps me focus on what I may not have noticed otherwise. Here in the office it's the soothing tick-tock of the wall clock and the rhythmic flapping of the house flag outside my window. From a deer stand, it's the rustle of a chipmunk or the sound a single leaf makes fluttering downward. And on a long run, a momentary pause makes me aware of a far-away chirp, the babble of a gentle brook or the wind rustling through the treetops. In those moments, the world seems simpler.

In our world, there is far too little quiet. We are bombarded with noise of all kind: music, traffic, honking horns, sirens, talking, cheering, screaming, the roar of machinery, TV news and so much more. Sometimes, we seem to embrace the noise, preferring its company to silence. Are we scared to be alone with our thoughts?

Quiet is hard to come by. Even in a sound proof room, one can hear his own faint but steady heartbeat. But quiet should be cherished. For in quiet, our hearts are calmed and thoughts directed.

The Psalmist says, "Be still and know that I am God." (Ps. 46:10) Why? Because it is when we are still before our Father and secure as His child, that we can live boldly in quiet confidence.

So, hush now. Be still. Be quiet. Be renewed.

"...in quietness and in confidence shall be your strength..."
Isaiah  30:15b

6 comments:

Casseday said...

I think Ps. 46:10 is one of the most under-utilized and under-applied scriptures in our modern society. How can God ever speak to us and direct us if we're constantly entertaining ourselves with noise?
Nothing against those that love to listen to music when they run, but for me, there's nothing more precious than the sound of my own footsteps high in the mountains or the stillness of a sunset.

Rebekah Trittipoe said...

Exactly! I'm with you 100%.

ChrisN said...

Maybe I'm being a bit hypocritical, seeing as I'm posting from my iPod(haha), but I don't like an iPod in my ears 24/7 if at all, and I'm from the current college generation.I completely agree with your post and I hope my classmates will take your advice to heart!

Rebekah Trittipoe said...

Well, Miss Chris, thank you. Glad to know there is one of you not plugging their ears with something other than wax, which, incidentally, is normally an old people thing. :)

Rick Gray said...

Totally agree. I love the quietness. I run with no music. I drive my car with no music. Some would think me to be shy and quiet, but to those who know, I am probably just the opposite. We all need peace and quiet and I know that is a different place for each of us.

AM said...

i love silence! it's why i stay up later than i probably should, why the kids are in bed on time, why i hate turning the TV on. i listen to music when i run, but not when i sleep, or when i walk. for running i like the 'pump me up' kind of feel because i actually HATE running. but for regular life, i would rather be in the moment. ;)