Into the Silence

September 9, 2008

As I mentioned in my last post, I am meeting this Silent Siege with excitement AND a little trepidation. (And it’s funny how similar excitement and trepidation can be.)

On one hand, I am in the middle of reading this REALLY obnoxious book called “Invitation to Silence and Solitude”. The book is actually quite phenomenal, it just stings a lot. As I am reading the book and seeking to develop these disciplines, I take the corporate invitation to silence as a welcome gift.

On the other hand, I am presently wrestling through some very intense things. Being alone in the silence with nothing but God, the accusations that are arising against Him, my own tossed-about emotions, and the deep wells of pain that I am stumbling upon is actually quite terrifying.

Something in me longs for distraction, anything that I might hide behind. Idle chatter… anything. Yet I know that I need to just press into this and fight it out until I come out fully surrendered and leaning on God. God seems pretty determined to work these things out in me… and I’m feeling rather hedged in at the moment. This Silent Siege being a pretty significant part of that hedging.

On top of that… we have the season of heightened grieving that I have recently found myself in. And, as it so happens, my mom died during the 90 Days of Consecration that I mentioned in my last post. I actually missed the first days of the consecration because I was home visiting my family. It was the last time that I saw my mom.

So… here I am… in a room full of people… in silence… in solitude… alone in my grief. Unsure about the things that are of utmost importance, unsure about God. Encountering pain that I cannot put into words. Crying a lot… in the silence… by myself.

I can’t stop talking to the Holy Spirit. I am so desperate for His counsel… His comfort… His instruction… His tangible nearness. I need to know what He knows… I need the knowledge of God, the fear of the Lord. I need Him to teach me what only He can teach me… I need him to communicate the love of God to me in a way that I can believe it, despite all of my doubt and confusion right now… despite the accusation that the world heaps against God. I need to know that He loves me like a mother. I need to know that I am not forsaken. I need to know that He hates death and hates wickedness. I need to know that Jesus REALLY is coming back and He REALLY is going to bring justice on the earth. I need to know that it’s true.

I have all of the ideas in my head. My experience of God cannot disprove those facts. But the accusation still persists.

I’ve believed before. You might even say that I believe it right now. But I certainly didn’t believe it (not really) several hours ago.

On top of that… we received some really terrible news tonight. More death… more loss. And there the news follows us… into the silence. Here I am… speachless and silent on the outside… but full of tumult, a violently raging storm on the inside. As if I wasn’t already struggling to believe truth about God.

I didn’t sing much tonight. All of the words felt like a lie. So I really did sit there in silence. Save for the time I spent weeping.

All of the things I have been proclaiming and declaring as my hope for the last year… my testimony of the Lord, it’s like it has been turned into a weapon against me. Few phrases have moved my heart like “Your name is Faithful and True” in the last 18 months. But tonight, those words drove me from the room… angry and confused… and desperate to believe the truth. I reached the outside of the little Justice prayer room and immediately was overcome by my emotions. I sat alone, in the cold… gasping for air as I sobbed.

Most of my dialogue with the Lord in these last few days is too personal to take outside of that relationship. God has heard and I have heard. And the conversation isn’t leaving that place. At least right now, it isn’t. But His leadership is perfect and He is violently uprooting areas of offense in my heart. It feels like a contradiction to say that I trust Him as He does it. Since this whole question of trusting Him is really the issue right now anyway.

I know the truth. At least right now I do. But I know that I’m not done wrestling. I don’t fully believe it yet. There are still more questions that I need to keep asking. There is still more honesty to be reached in that place that is only shared by God and myself.

Silence is terrifying. There wait all of the lies. There wait all of my emotions. There wait my fears. There waits the truth. There waits God.

But I have nowhere else to be. So, for the next 2 months, here I go… into the silence.



  1. This reminded me of a time I was on a road trip with three friends a couple years ago. One of us fessed up to feeling like she wasn’t praying as much as the rest of us, and feeling like she had drifted far from God. Immediately, the rest of us said we felt exactly the same way, like we were somehow praying way less than anyone else, and not near to God anymore. We began ministering to each other, openly sharing our feelings.

    It finally came around to the fact that each of us had tremendous fear about pressing in to God, without any distractions or help from anyone else. One by one we shared how terrified we were to just be quiet in the presence of God, and of the intimacy with Him this would lead to. I wasn’t feeling the same level of terror the rest of them were, and was speaking words of wisdom (mostly picked up from IHOP teachers), encouraging them to press in in the silence in spite of the fear, and helping them work through their issues.

    There was a break in the conversation as we stopped at a truck stop to get something to drink. As we walked toward the building, the conviction of the Lord came on me. I suddenly realized I didn’t feel the same fear they did, not because I didn’t have it, but because I was able to hide behind my training in counseling and inner healing, working through their issues and ignoring mine!

    So, yes, the silence IS terrifying. God has given me plenty of time alone in the silence since then to let me feel it. While it hasn’t been fun, it has already become apparent that it is in fact worth it. Praise God that it is all a tunnel, eh?

  2. I like very much, what Pythagoras says about silence.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: