When silence speaks, will we be present to hear what is being spoken?
My headphones are in but it's almost a foreign motion these days, I use it just as a front now. No music is playing and I hardly notice. I've forgotten how common the constant lull of noise is in life.
Perpetual silence has become my every day reality.
I've learned a hard lesson in these last two months without power. No means to charge my laptop, limited internet access, darkness before 7pm, dead iPod and dead phone with no hope of distraction or entertainment. Budgeting my battery life means parting with playing music as I work or clean. I've endured many quiet nights by candle light, sorting through a laundry list of thoughts which seem to present itself best on a silent backdrop. I've faced what feels like utter nothingness and complete boredom as I fight to find something to pass the time.
Most of all, I've learned what it takes to embrace silence.
Within the first month of moving here to the north, a place in which I have no history, my two fellow housemates traveled back to Hoima from where we came. I was left alone in a house with over 9 rooms and a compound that could swallow a small duplex in America. No power, no person, no entertainment, no other option. Silence felt like a madness the first few days. How I was longing for deeper human connection than the strangers I was just beginning to know. How I dreamt of calling my loved ones back home, talking over the small nuances of the day, over the new things I was learning or maybe the challenges I was facing. I spent much time imagining what my friends were doing, wishing I had a way to distract myself and feeling the frustration of having something that I felt entitled to withheld. I wasted a lot of time running from silence.
When silence speaks she tells us of the everyday joys that are awaiting. Of the simplicity longing to be held and the power of a quiet moment within our hearts.
I'm learning to see silence as an opportunity to listen. To hear what my heart says. To sieve through the clutter of self-entitlement, disappointment and discouragement and to cling tightly to words of hope and faith. I'm learning to listen to the Spirit of God, to take more time in prayer and to truly enjoy every moment in His presence. Silence has taught me great appreciation for prolonged simplicity. We can praise simplicity when it's convenient but once you find yourself stumbling around after your candle has gone out, or needing to reply pressing emails, it seems to be another story. I've learned deep gratitude for the moments I do have to use my computer, to post a picture or reply to a friend.
I'm learning how to still my mind from all the worries of the day. I've grown to love belaboring in the afternoons, barefooted in the dirt, preparing the land for the quiet dreams that God is speaking to me. I can sit and watch my chicken scour the land and find perfect pleasure in doing so.
I'm learning to be present and unafraid of what silence is speaking.