Saturday, April 2, 2011

Silence in the Listening

"Listen is an anagram for silent. What is noisy in your life?" (J, BSF teaching leader)
As I considered J's question, common sources came to mind: TV, radio, iPods -- my own inner voice. . .

I need more expendable cash (!) for Pat's upcoming wedding, a new pair of shoes, a piano tune up, some minor home repairs. . . Maybe I need to get a job. I prayed about God's revelation in this matter, but so far I have not heard from Him.

(I wonder why!) I signed up to sub; that's a good-paying job, but I can sub only two days a week, and I just never seem to be organized enough to work it into my schedule. I had good intentions when I signed up! I've applied for some online jobs, but nothing came of those. Maybe God's silence and lack of action means He doesn't want me to have a job right now. Maybe my work at BSF is job enough. But if that's the case, then where am I going to get the money for the wedding?" And I'm off to the races! UGH!

Studying Isaiah 53 this week, I was reminded and, once again, amazed at Jesus' silence before his accusers. "He was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent, he did not open his mouth." (Verse 7) Some 700 years later, Christ stood before His accusers and uttered not a word.

Charles Spurgeon writes: "Nothing can be said to to excuse human guilt; and therefore, He who bore its whole weight stood speechless before His judge. Evidently our Lord, furnished a remarkable fulfillment of prophecy. A long defense of Himself would have been contrary to Isaiah's prediction." (

Jesus is the ultimate model of silence. Long before He faced His accusers and the Cross, He spent hours alone with the Father, seeking to hear His voice. I doubt Jesus filled the solitary space and time with a litany of comments or a running dialogue of obsessive worries! I doubt He chattered on so long that He couldn't hear the Father speak! No, He was silent.

And this morning, He calls me to

Be still and know that He is God.
Bow before the Prince of Peace.
Let the noise and clamor cease.
Be still.
(Stephen Curtis Chapman)