One, we live in a world that is rarely silent.
Two, most of us are uncomfortable with silence.
And three, we desperately need silence.
Think about it. We are surrounded by constant noise––man-made noise. Outside, we rarely escape the sound of cars, lawnmowers, or others’ voices. Inside we can hear the whir of the air conditioner and fans or the hum of the refrigerator.
Should we find ourself without any of these artificially created sounds, we get a bit itchy. During class when everyone had settled into their work and the room fell silent, many students would look around nervously and then begin tapping a pencil or whispering to a neighbor. For many of us, if it is too quiet at home, we feel the need to turn on the TV or radio just to have some background noise. Some of us can’t even fall asleep if it is too quiet. And then, like the above mentioned celebrity, some of us surround ourselves with people so that we are not left alone in the quiet with our own thoughts.
But silence is necessary. Without silence everything else loses intensity. Take music, for instance. The rests in a musical composition are just as important as the notes played. Without that break, the next note or musical phrase is not as impactful. Comedic timing is all about the placement of silence––that pregnant pause before the punchline.
Finally, without silence we wouldn’t be able to hear the voices of nature or, more importantly, the whisper or God.
We truly do need to carve out some quiet time for ourselves each day, both figuratively and literally. We need to be alone with our own thoughts for a while so that God can speak to us through His Word, through the Holy Spirit, and through His Creation.
Silence truly is golden.