God in translation (Sounds and Silence
Sunday 7 December, 2014
IN A QUIET HEART, IN QUIET WILDERNESSRemember how the Lord your God led you all the way in the wilderness these forty years, to humble and test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep his commands.(vs 27)
As we journey through our lives, we arrive at different places physically and spiritually, and we encounter God in different ways. In carefree youth, we might experience God in an ecstasy of dance and song, or in the awesome power of wind and wave. As we mature, we may grow sensitive to God’s presence, not so much amid noise and commotion but in the stillness of silent contemplation and prayer, and in the gentler rhythms and complex patterns of nature.
There have been times when, like the Hebrews of the Exodus story, I have carried God’s commands in my heart through a place or time that could be compared to a barren and hostile wilderness. I know it can be tempting to let standards slide, or even to give up on life when we are worn down by circumstances we cannot control, and when God seems to have abandoned us. However, if we look to the inner life, we will find new depths of untapped resources; a wellspring of God’s eternal spirit within us.
The resilience of our trust in spite of disappointment, the strength of the conscience in spite of temptation, the endurance of our hope in spite of despair, these are the measure of God’s presence in adversity.
Prayer † Loving God, when the way ahead is dark and wrought with danger, catch our eyes with a flicker of your flame within us – a reminder that we never walk alone. Amen.
The World Alliance of Reformed Churches (WARC) is a fellowship of 75 million Reformed Christians in 214 churches in 107 countries. Its member churches are Congregational, Presbyterian, Reformed and United churches with roots in the 16th-century Reformation led by John Calvin, John Knox and others. WARC has a small secretariat in Geneva, Switzerland.