Wired For Silence

“We need to find God, and he cannot be found in noise and restlessness. God is the friend of silence.  See how nature – trees, flowers, grass – grows in silence; see the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence… We need silence to be able to touch souls.”  -Blessed Mother Theresa

Wired with Sound

The average college-aged male spends between 4 and 14 hours a day in electronic media.  If you add-in sleep, our time for work, and personal interactions, there’s not much time for anything else.

I often find myself having to really focus on paying attention to people in everyday surroundings; avoiding the temptation to multi-task while I’m around others.

Entering Into the Silence: Reflection

The silence of the church is so different than the constant sensation we find outside.

Coming from such a sound and media-saturated environment, it’s hard to get settled into the silence.  Why do we find it so difficult?

Silence offers us the opportunity to be alone with ourselves, which is sometimes difficult on a college campus with roommates, classrooms, lounges, cafeterias, and football games.  When we’re not being bombarded with media, the silence affords the chance to reflect on what we’ve done, who we are, what we’re going to do.  Reflection helps us to know ourselves.  But, reflection only gets us so far.  It is primarily in relationship that we discover who we are.

From Reflection to Prayer: Silence with a Purpose

Reflection moves from self-evaluation into personal prayer when we place ourselves before the Lord who is always present.  “In this silence, unbearable to the ‘outer’ man, the Father speaks to us his incarnate Word” (CCC 2717).  God is everywhere, but the parish church is a privileged place for this encounter because Jesus is personally present in the Blessed Sacrament of the Eucharist, whole and entire: His body, blood, soul, and divinity.  God is present…personally present!

How To: Silent Personal Prayer

First, place yourself in the presence of God: “Lord, I know that you’re here, I know that you’re present, I know that you see me, that you hear me, that you love me.  I adore you profoundly.”  Or…more simply: “Okay, Lord, here I am.”

Second, thank God for who He is and what he’s done in your life.  What are you thankful for today, this week?  Thank Him for creating you; for sending His Son Jesus; for setting us free from sin.

Awkward Silence

Silence can be awkward.  But so can conversation.  Awkward silences are okay with God.  A “respectful silence in the presence of the ‘ever greater’ God” is good (CCC 2628).  Even my best friends are frequently those with whom silence isn’t awkward.  It’s okay to just be in the silence with God.  One who prays is never alone.

2 thoughts on “Wired For Silence”

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