“A time to keep silence”
It’s a quiet evening after a busy day. Not too busy, fortunately. But I was moving almost all day, getting things checked off what has become an incredibly long list. I actually took the time to write everything down, which I never do. Mostly I think that taking the time to make a list takes away time from actually getting things done. But today, just to wrap my mind around everything that needs attention in my life, I wrote it all down. It takes up three pages of school paper. Lord have mercy.
Having it written down did give me focus, however. I just went from one thing to the next, accomplishing one thing at a time. Didn’t cross off near as much as I’d like to, but every little bit helps, right?
And this evening, my sweetie are both working on our laptops, while listening to the Dodger game. I’m not even sure what the score is (I’m a visual learner, and it’s hard for me to pay enough attention when it’s just audio) but it’s just so pleasant having it on in the background. Okay, I checked. It’s 2-0, Dodgers. Good times.
Our girl is out with friends, so the house is missing her energy. And our boy is in his room, probably doing some combination of reading and playing games on his iProduct. So it’s quiet out here in the living room.
It’s cooler, too, now. It wasn’t awful today, but it was still summer. But we’ve got the windows open and the fans on, and we’re getting a pleasant breeze.
So, quiet. Content. And I’m thinking about 1 Kings 19.
You know the story well. Elijah had run from Jezebel and was hiding in a cave, when God came to him. He told him to come out of the cave, and “stand on the mountain before the Lord.” And then Elijah beheld a great and strong wind that broke the rocks in pieces, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. And after the earthquake there was a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire.
But after the fire, there was a still small voice. And that voice was the Lord.
It’s a beautiful passage that reminds us of the importance of listening for God, and that we can’t go through life expecting Him to always show Himself in the vast and mighty and grand and powerful. He is, of course, vast and mighty and grand and powerful, but very often He is heard in the quiet.
But then I got to thinking, on this quiet evening, about Exodus 14. When the Israelites crossed the Red Sea, it was by a strong east wind. God was in that wind.
And I thought about 1 Kings 18, when the prophets of Baal had accepted Elijah’s challenge to see whose God was the true God. The sacrifice to Baal sat untouched by any deity. But the altar and sacrifice Elijah offered to God ~ the wood and the stones and the dust and the trench full of water ~ were consumed by a fire from heaven. God was in that fire.
And I thought about Acts 16, when Paul and Silas were in jail. They prayed and sang hymns, when suddenly there was a great earthquake. It shook the foundations of the prison, opening all the doors and loosing everyone’s chains. The jailer who witnessed the miracle gave his heart to the Lord that day. God was in that earthquake.
I guess the thing to remember is that God is everywhere, manifest in any way He chooses. He is both power and peace.
~ “… and a time to speak” ~
What a great post! I’ve never thought to compare I Kings 19 with Exodus 14, I Kings 18, and Acts 16 before, but every word you say is true. At His discretion, God may be in all of them or in none of them, and our job is to learn to look and to listen and to discern His Presence. Aren’t you glad His sheep know His voice?
I am. And thank you for that reminder!