Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Seeking God in Silence

Last night I agreed to speak at a women’s retreat in May. When I told the organizer about my experience with contemplative/centering prayer, she expressed an interest in the women trying this method of coming before God.

The idea is to sit in silence and stillness before God in both mind and body. So, this morning, when I opened Connecting with God: A Spiritual Formation Guide and saw the title of the chapter I’m starting today, I smiled to myself at how God brings things together. The title? “Seeking God in Silence.”

In the fifteenth century, Thomas à Kempis wrote:
In silence and peace a devout soul makes progress and learns the secrets of the scriptures. Only in silence and peace does a devout soul find floods of tears in which it may wash and cleanse itself each night. The further the soul is from the noise of the world, the closer it may be to its Creator, for God, with his holy angels, will draw close to a person who seeks solitude and silence.*
The authors of Connecting with God suggest spending ten minutes a day in quiet solitude—no reading, looking out the window or reviewing the day’s agenda. Simply sit in a comfortable chair, close your eyes and silently repeat a truth about God or a short phrase or sentence from the Bible: “You love me!” “You are my strong tower.” “In the beginning was the Word.” “You are with me.” There are many more. This repetition helps clear the clutter out of your mind and puts your focus on God. Use this time to experience God’s presence, being open to whatever he may want to say or do in you or for you. Wait on him with expectancy.

“… the Lord is in his holy temple; let all the earth be silent before him.” Habakkuk 2:20 NIV



*Quoted in Connecting with God: A Spiritual Formation Guide by Renovaré. [page 63, 64]

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