I had a moment today. Just a moment.
Isn’t it so that when you declare an intention, and you’re hoping the words might draw you and those within earshot closer to God, Satan takes notice.
“You think you will___________? Well, how about if I____________!”
Yeah, he did that, Picked up on my declaration that the cusp of Advent is the perfect time to “lift it up, lay it down and carry on” and he messed with me. That’s what I get for making a bare-faced statement on the first day of December from the front seat of my car.The cusp of Advent is the perfect time to 'lift it up, lay it down and carry on'. Click To Tweet
I even created a cool Instagram image, waving it in front of the enemy like a white flag of surrender.
When will I learn?
I sometimes warn people, when they say they’re asking God to help them grow in a particular virtue, “be careful what you ask for.” I do know from experience that when we voice a desire to gain wisdom or patience — or even to cultivate the habit of lifting up our concerns and laying them at the feet of Jesus — we will be tested.
I guess I had to learn that lesson again.
So for a moment today, I had a moment, a small space of time when my heart ached and my mind inflated miniscule woes into giant monsters that threatened to invade the quiet and beauty of this season of Advent. Sometimes it doesn’t take a big thing to become a big thing. It just takes dropping our guard, laying down the armor and making a bold declaration.
Do I mean what I say? Or do I say what I WANT to mean. I had to make good on my words: “Lift It Up, Lay It Down and Carry On.”
In my moment today, there were no words. I sat silent.
“Speech is silver and silence is golden.”
It took a few beats, but I purposed to listen. Just listen. Instead of babbling pleas for peace and for wisdom, rather than recite my list of things God ought to deal with, I went for gold. And I listened.
I didn’t hear the voice of God. What I did hear was……
My litany of fears, doubts, accusations, regrets — they all took a commercial break and I listened to the silence.
On Sunday, bursting at the seams in our small town’s biggest church, we were invited into silence. A hush, soft as velvet, fell over every pew and for that moment in time, we all heard the same thing.
In these days of darkness, with the earth slowing, hushing, leaning low into winter, we might expect quiet. Instead we get noise of our own making. Jingling bells, clanging expectations, shrieking demands, nagging “to-dos” and “should-haves” and “I wants”.
Merriment and melancholy, they can show up at the party hand-in-hand. When they do, pause and go in search of the most beautiful sound you may hear all season……..