6-2011: “The Eloquence of Silence”

Think about the noises that have your attention. Then wonder about what truths God is waiting to share with you once you have taken out the earbuds or disconnected from a video game.

“The Eloquence of Silence”

By Lyndelle Brower Chiomenti

Music from our cell phones, YouTube, and MP3 players. Late night dorm get-togethers. The clamor from video games, traffic, construction sites, televisions, and sports events. Noise seems ever present these days.

This constant din is harmful to our physical health. People who work in open office spaces are more irritable, less likely to sleep well, and have poorer digestion than people who work in enclosed offices which are quieter.1

Noise also affects “learning, reading, problem solving, motivation, school performance, and social and emotional development.”2 One can conclude then that noise also affects a person’s relationship with God. Is it any wonder that He says to us, “Be still, and know that I am God” (Ps. 46:10)? He knows that in order to be transformed into the likeness of His Son through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, we need time alone with Him—time during which we stop talking even to Him, and wait in silence for what He has to say to us.

Moses spent 40 years in Midian (Acts 7:29, 30), and Paul stayed three years in the desert (Gal. 1:17, 18). In these quiet places, the noises of their world were replaced with a holy silence in which they could discern God’s voice. The result for both these men involved revival and reformation.

Ellen White wrote: “By permitting John to be banished to the Isle of Patmos, Christ placed His disciple in a position where he could receive the most precious truth for the enlightenment of the churches. He placed him in solitude, that his ear and his heart might be sanctified to receive this truth. . . .

“The eloquence of silence before God is often essential. If the mind is kept in continual excitement, the ear is prevented from hearing the truth that the Lord would communicate to His believing ones. Christ takes His children from that which holds their attention, that they may behold His glory.”3

Think about the noises that have your attention. Then wonder about what truths God is waiting to share with you once you have taken out the earbuds or disconnected from a video game. Where could you go to be still and know that He is God?

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1. The Guardian, “Quiet Please,” by Rebecca Hardy, http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2008/sep/23/healthandwellbeing.pollution (accessed May 10, 2011).

2. Medscape News, “Noise Pollution: A Modern Plague: Adverse Health Effects of Noise,” http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/554566_3 (accessed May 10, 2011).

3. Our High Calling, p. 315.

For further reading, go to The Desire of Ages, page 363, http://egwdatabase.whiteestate.org/nxt /gateway.dll ?f=templates$fn=default.htm$vid=default (accessed May 16, 2011).