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Sitting with the God of Silence

We normally don't think of God as silent. After all, most of Scripture is filled with God telling people things: go build an ark, go tell Pharaoh to let My people go, prophesy to the people, come and follow Me. We turn to Scripture and prayer over and over to listen to what God has to say to us.

Except when He doesn't say anything.

Sometimes, God is silent. We pray, we implore, we wait. And He remains silent. It's not a very comfortable place to be. We get impatient and angry. We shout at God, hoping He will hear us and answer. And He remains silent.

We remind ourselves that God is good, and He is with us in that silence, but it often feels as if He's not silent, but rather ignoring us. "Answer me! I'm trying to be faithful! I just want to know that You're there!" We try to be patient and sit with this God of Silence. We struggle to be comfortable in the silence, as we are in the silent company of a dear friend. Yet, the silence wears on us. We want to break that silence - to hear a word of comfort, of compassion, of presence. We strain to hear His voice. And there is only silence.

It's hard to be in relationship with Someone who is silent. We want to quit, walk away. Too hard, we say. I tried, we say. Siting with this God of Silence is too much to bear. I need Your voice, Your direction, the certain knowledge that You are here.

Sitting with the God of Silence is irritating, painful, disheartening. It wears on the soul. Yet, He asks us to continue to sit with Him in this silence and we know we must. We may not know why He asks this of us, but He does, and we obediently submit to this God of Silence.

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Crossing Guard

I saw you
today
as you guided
your little man across that busy street.

You were wearing some
big man boots
and
watching cars and lights.

Your little man had on
black sneakers and
a Mickey Mouse hat
that bounced
as he walked.

He wasn't watching nothing but
your big man boots
and
the white stripes of the crosswalk.

Just before
he got to the sidewalk again,
his step bounced a bit
- he hopped over
a spot where the asphalt broke.

You turned to look,
holding out a hand to
your little man.
Not rushed or angry,
just making sure
he got up
on that sidewalk.

Then you walked on,
in your big man boots,
face into a cold Michigan wind,
with the little man behind,
his hat bouncing.