Silence. Silence is my least favorite thing. I have been known to turn on the radio in my car before starting the engine and changing the channel at least 10 times within a mile-long drive. I will turn on the TV or a YouTube clip and walk away to do something in the kitchen. This is just to feel like I’m not alone; to check out of everything that is going on. Even now as I sit here writing this, I am praying for a distraction; praying for a roommate to come down stairs and talk to me; praying for a call or for someone to turn on some music. I hate silence. And yet this is what Lent is about. It is about taking us out of our comfort zone and filling those cracks in with God.
A dear mentor of mine recently said to me that we find answers in the silence. I begrudgingly admit he is right. When I walk away from all the noise, when I turn off the radio, I find the answers. This lent I have taken on the practice of sitting in the silence. I can’t tell you how many times I have screamed into my quiet car annoyed at the lack of sound coming out of my radio. In those moments, I take a deep breath and embrace it. I lean into that silence. It hasn’t been have easy. However, through these times of complete and udder discomfort, I have found clarity. I take the time to reflect on events and conversations that bring me joy. In those moments I see where God is calling me.
When we give ourselves time to reflect and listen, that is where we find God. The nineteenth century Trappist monk, Thomas Merton once wrote “God is hidden within me. I find Him by hiding in the silence in which He is concealed.” Even Jesus took time to walk away and pray.
This Lent I would encourage you to take time everyday to reflect, listen, to see where God is hiding within you. Embrace the silence. It’s uncomfortable, it is difficult, but it is worth it.
By Katie Young
If you hate silence too and want to commiserate with Katie, send her a message.