yesterday was a big word day. i'm pretty certain i used up all the words in my maximum amount alloted for one day. between the several stories and emails i had to write up, i was done. fried. when i arrived home, i treated myself to a glass of red wine, shaved my legs, and flipped the switch to "off" for just a short while. it was great.
i did however end up reading the first thought from God is No Fool. It was focused on the art of listening. how God is right there. he's knocking at our door, he wants to come in...and we are, doing everything other than what we should be doing. we're asking what door he's at. we're picking up the house. we're wondering what he'll think about our home and the life we're currently living. we're being prideful that he would choose to come in to our house. we're talking over and around the insistent knocking. the knocking suddenly becomes drowned out from the chatter, the noise, the distraction. then he catches our attention. we quiet ourselves down just long enough to hear that still, small voice. but what is it saying to us? that, we cannot make out. we remain quiet. the knocking gets more quiet as well. all we hear is his voice saying, "listen."
a shiver ran across me, and i sat in the silence of my bedroom, and listened. i felt if anything, that was what i was being asked to do. i think God knows me quite well. he knows that i don't do a good job at listening. i enjoy listening to other people, but to him, not as much. i have more control in situations where others are speaking to me...but with him...i have no control over what he will say to me, what truth he will bring to the forefront, or what he will ask me to do.
the quiet was uncomfortable. ever since my freshman year of college, i have not embraced the quiet like i once did. it's a definite shock to the system when you go from living in your parent's home in the middle of nowhere with your own bedroom, to living in a dormitory, with girls you wouldn't neccessarily choose to live with, be friends with, or share bathrooms with. the noise was constant. i would steal away to coffee shops, to the lakeside, to my car...anything to get away from the noise. eventually, it swallowed me. i became so comfortable with it, that when i was met by the quiet, i was scrambling for noise! even static noise. anything, but the quiet.
during this time in my life, i felt far from God. i was not giving him the time that i once did in the quiet of my own bedroom. instead, i was watching late night tv with roommates, getting up at 4 am to make coffee for cheap tippers, and investing all of my time and energy into school.
yes, i went to a christian college, but i can honestly say that i felt the farthest from God while i was there, than at any other point in my life. when i am forced to be religious, the desire is not there. when i am forced to read the bible, the desire is not there. when i am forced to go to chapel, the desire is NOT there. when i am forced to be 'happy' and 'all smiles' i become fake. those feelings were much of what i felt while at college, and they left a bad taste in my mouth. i don't mean to discredit the wonderful experiences that many people have had there, but mine, was a flurry of mixed emotions. when i left that place, it took a good year to climb out of those old habits and feelings...to find myself again...and to move on to the next phase in my life.
i am still trying to get comfortable with the quiet. most days when i arrive home from work, i feel the temptation to go and turn the tv on. to fill my life and my apartment with noise. i'm not ready for the quiet. i don't want to think. and i'm not going to lie. that's exactly what i do most days. every once in a while though, i will let myself just be. i will take whatever thoughts float in and capture them. i'll bat them back and forth, twist them and turn them, and send them on their way.
and i will listen.
i could go on and on, but i should stop myself here. i'll save it for another day. thanks for reading, if you made it this far. i have the greatest urge right now to sign off with some kind of quirky marketing line, but i will resist. that is for work. not for this blog.
enjoy your weekend.