Thursday, March 25, 2010

Shut Up! and LISTEN!!

This morning I've owned a strong awareness of how much I enjoy my life; I was finishing up my morning hike, feeling the fresh March air, anticipating the day. During the walk I'd been purposefully practicing a meditative frame of spirit, trying to simply listen - listen without adding my own noise - and allow God to speak truth into my being.

I wanted to "hear", yet I am trying not to be dependent on limiting God to the traditional parameters of "speaking." I am learning that I can apprehend something of God when both of us are quiet... if, that is, I am willing to understand "quiet" as something more loaded, more redolent than the vacuum our western consciousness tends to imagine in the absence of noise. If, that is, I am open to understanding God as more personal, more multi-dimensional (or, better yet, not dimensional at all...), more complete....

But I digress. The point is that I arrived home in communion with the Spirit. And I mention that because I believe that there is a strong relationship between my spiritual peace and the opening statement that "This morning I've owned a strong awareness of how much I enjoy my life."

I've been thinking about the tendency of our way of life to add noise, distraction, and random activity that is often devoid of meaning. In fact, I have become suspicious that we value our distractions so much because we are uncomfortable with the idea of resting. Jesus - in a passage (from the parable of the sower) that I'm fond of quoting - said, "The cares of the world, and the lure of wealth, and the desire for other things come in and choke the word, and it yields nothing." Mark 4:19

It may be accurate to say that we can avoid being confronted by truth if we make sure that we're too busy to have to face it. But it is equally - and more poignantly - the case that to say that we likewise avoid healing, and wholeness, restoration and joy at the same time.

Sometimes I think that God simply wants us to SHUT UP and take the time to listen. Lent can be helpful in this regard. These next few days are a good time to be deliberately contemplative, and to become more open to "hearing" God speak truth into our being.

Peace - DEREK

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