Be attentive.Luke 21: 34-35
See that your hearts are not sluggish, inebriated or weighed down by the worries of the world, so you are not caught unaware and ill-prepared for the day that approaches.
Can you stand in quiet assurance before menace or manipulation and still reject violence of word or deed?
There is much
that mitigates against quiet wakefulness
in the rush and rumble of difficult days;
in aching hearts,
and the slosh and swell of anger and anxiety.
Even as we minimize background bustle
and soften foreground chatter,
often we concede
the middle ground of mindfulness
to the rancor of unspoken argument,
preoccupied with daily distresses.
And still silence
often eludes us
in these tumultuous times.
Each day bears a fresh payload of problems.
All times, in their own way, are troubled.
Some seasons are uniquely tempestuous.
In silent stillness
the swirling sediment sinks
till clearness creeps in.
We have entered an extraordinary time of darkness.
A shadowland of struggle looms,
eager to engulf and disorient us in gloom.
Here, silence makes a first impression as isolation,
darkness as creeping alienation,
stillness as capitulation.
Without steady stillness,
clearness of mind, heart, spirit
cannot coalesce and enlighten cloudiness.
Blessed are the clear-hearted,Matthew 5: 8
they will see the Holy One (in everything).
In quiet time,
calm and shadow present another aspect;
invite a different kind of engagement.
is so much more
than absence of noise.
Surrounding soundlessness is the unheard ambience—
front, center, background—
that is both container and conveyor for action and agitation.
Silence can be a fullness rather than a void…Terry Hershey
To be still is a spiritual endeavor.
As we cannot see the wood for the trees,
we fail to note the quiet
between, before, and following sound.
In the beginning, it is written,
Spirit hovered over the dark—
breath to stir the still waters of the deep.
Silent stillness speak volumes.
More than a restorative,
it is a revolutionary resource for resistance.
Dark and quiet can integrate and
inoculate us from alienation by drawing us closer,
requiring us to lean in and listen to one another.
divesting from certain
patterns of thought and action.
involves the required reflection
of space-making sabbath.
And sabbath is radically subversive;
agitating angst or apathy with peace,
calmly disturbing distress.
Be still and know that I AM God.Psalm 46:10
Where diabolical forces are in play
and daily deceptions abound,
sowing distain for deeper truth,
may we resist the clamor of violent thought and action,
defy the desire to dehumanize,
decry the temptation to demonize.
May we also reject the futility
of reflexive retribution so we might rest,
rooted and grounded in love beyond understanding.
While leaves quiver, limbs shake
and the strongest trunks must bend and sway,
roots alone remain; silent and still unshakeable.
Be still and know that I AM.
Be still and know.