God is silence. Words communicate, but so does silence. Silence can create a space where we are allowed to rest. “My soul in silence waits,” the Psalmist writes. God invites us to God’s presence even when words are absent. Think of those times a friend was willing to be silent with you — willing to hear you, receive you, or simply be there with you. Silence can be a form of love.
The Christian composer, Arvo Pärt, says his music arises from the silence of his soul: Silence is the pause in me when I am near to God. The 14th century mystic, Meister Eckhart, wrote, Nothing is so like God as silence. We are not always happy about this, echoing Job’s lament: I cry to you and you do not answer me. In Shūsaku Endō’s powerful novel, Silence, we read:
“Lord, I resented your silence.”
“I was not silent. I suffered beside you.”
Even when God is silent, God is speaking — God is with us. This is today’s focus in our Lenten journey: Jesus, God’s Word made flesh, communicates love in his silent walk to the cross, bearing our sins, revealing God’s love.
Today’s prayer is from Mother Teresa (Choral Setting): The fruit of silence is prayer. The fruit of prayer is faith. The fruit of faith is love. The fruit of love is service. The fruit of service is peace.
Rev. Peter Narum, Partner Congregation Pastor
He said, “Go out and stand on the mountain before the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.” Now there was a great wind, so strong that it was splitting mountains and breaking rocks in pieces before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake; and after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire; and after the fire a sound of sheer silence. When Elijah heard it, he wrapped his face in his mantle and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave. Then there came a voice to him that said, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”-1 Kings 19:11-13