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What to do about the noise? Have you noticed the not so subtle increase in the noise of our lives? With everyone carrying a powerful device which gives them access to a universe of music, video, texts, notifications, email, etc., the increase in the amount of stimulation to our brains is remarkable.
Our access to so many sources of input increase our exposure to constant noise. Noise becomes sort of addictive. We have something streaming into our mind every possible moment. We might even be uncomfortable without the noise.
So what, you say? What’s wrong with the constant noise? Who wants quiet? What good does quiet do? Well, from the perspective of our own well-being, it could be very important. For one thing, all that noise is not benign or message-neutral. From the news we listen to, the music, the talk shows, we are continuously being influenced. Our view of things is being shaped or influenced. Frustration, fear and maybe anger, can be stoked by the voices we listen to. The influences can be good, and they can be no good.
Even if you wanted to have some quiet in your life, how would you get it? Do you have a practice to create some quiet space in your routine?
What if God’s voice will not compete with the noises of our world? By that I mean God will not shout over the noise we allow in our lives so he can speak to us, or reveal himself to us.
What if we have to choose to listen for God to speak to us? How would we do that? Three thoughts.
First, start a practice of turning off the outside noise from time to time, for a specific amount of time. Say 30 minutes, minimum. Just turn it off. Maybe during your commute if you have one. Or early in the morning if you can get up ahead of things. Simply begin to notice what you are thinking of and observing in the absence of noise. Commit to this practice for at least 2 weeks.
Second, think about your understanding of how God might speak to you. Do you believe it? Or if not, would you like to believe hearing from God is part of our normal walk with Him? Take a look at the gospel of John in chapters 14-16 to see what Jesus said about the Spirit speaking to us. Give it a thought.
Lastly, ask. Now that you have begun the practice of creating quiet space for your mind and heart…ask God what he wants to say to you. What he has for you. Listen. Be patient.