The Sound in the Silence

I remember the last time our electricity went off in the night. I noticed it, not from the sudden absence of ambient light, but from the sudden silence. In an instant, no sound of running refrigerator, or humming air conditioner, ours and all our neighbors. Just silence.

But that silence was not good. It meant uncertainty, and had the potential to be harmful. It meant disconnect from things that made our lives easier to handle. Later, when all the humming resumed, I breathed a sigh of relief. We would not be left to cope with hardship.

All through Lent we have been on the theme of listening. And although listening means tuning out some things in order to hear others, if also implies that there is a sound in the silence. A sound that reassures, that tells us we are not alone, that we will be OK. A sound, “thin, quiet” as translated in the Common English Bible. A sound that says God is ground, God is rock, God is power.

The still, small voice is always there, just too often drowned out by the bigger sounds. We work to listen beyond those more showy sounds, to hear the sound that is in the silence.