Each Sunday there is a short article in the bulletin from church. It is sometimes written by one of the pastors but frequently it’s written by a member of the congregation. Last Sunday’s article was written by a young woman who is involved in our deaf ministry. I’d like to share her words with you because they struck a chord for me.
“Standing in the Wal-Mart checkout, I watched the cashier ring up my purchases. “Your total is $14.38” she said with a smile. As I proceeded to swipe my card, she casually asked me, “So how are you today?” I hesitated for a moment not sure how to respond. Here I was at a sign language interpreter training school for two weeks and had taken a vow of silence. For two weeks the only form of communication allowed was through American Sign Language. Knowing I could not use my voice, I simply gave the lady a thumbs up.
“It was later that day while walking across campus on my way to class that I had a strange epiphany. Since silence was required, listening and watching somehow became natural. Without the distraction of talking on my cell phone, listening to music or radio in the car, texting and internet usage, it forced me to be still. When I am still, I know God. I felt God speak to me in His still small voice, “Are you hearing in a deaf world, or deaf in a hearing world?” It suddenly dawned on me that I have been the one who is deaf. By allowing so much “noise” in my life, I have weakened my abiliy to hear the gentle voice of God.
“It is all to easy to get wrapped up in the conveniences of our culture that we crowd out the spiritual moments we could be experiencing on a daily basis simply by being silent. We live in a world that is deaf to the spiritual things of God. It is up to us to hear His voice and respond. Challenge yourself this week to make room for silence — make room for God!”