Sunday, June 1, 2008

Silence--a Home for the Word

“Silence is the home of the word. Silence gives strength and fruitfulness to the word,” writes Henri Nouwen (The Way of the Heart, Ballantine Books, 1983, page 34).

Instead of silence, noise and busyness is more often the background and springboard for many of today’s communicators. For all who would communicate God’s Word a rediscovery of the value of silence will be essential. As you spend quiet time immersed in the Bible, a book, reviewing an article, or reading pages online as you prepare to write or speak—cherish the silence.

“How seldom have long talks proved to be good and fruitful? Would not many if not most of the words we use be better left unspoken? We speak about the events of the world, but how often do we really change them for the better?

"We speak about people and their ways, but how often do our words do them or us any good? We speak about our ideas and feelings as if everyone were interested in them, but how often do we really feel understood? We speak a great deal about God and religion, but how often does it bring us or others real insight?”(The Way of The Heart, Ballantine Books, 1983, pages 36-37).

Let silence do its work in your heart and mind as you gather thoughts and words and prepare to share them with others. Listen first in silence.

“Just as the rain and snow descend from the skies and don’t go back until they’ve watered the earth, doing their work of making things grow and blossom, producing seed for farmers and food for the hungry, so will the words that come out of my mouth not come back empty-handed. They’ll do the work I sent them to do, they’ll complete the assignment I gave them” (Isaiah 55:10-11, The Message).

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