It's been almost 5 months since my last blog post. Strangely it's titled The Silence. I wasn't trying to be prophetic.
I didn't intentionally set out to take a break from blogging, it just sort of happened. I was tired. Tired of all of the noise. I've also taken a break from books, and social situations and anything else that felt too noisy.
It seemed like every book and blog I was reading had the same message over and over again... try harder. Try harder to be a better mom. Try harder to make a better meal.
Try harder to be a better friend. Try harder to fit into those jeans. Try harder to be closer to Jesus. Try harder to conquer sin. Try harder to be happy. Try harder to... well, you get the idea.
And so, like an irritated 3 year old, I put my hands over my ears and stomped my foot a bit. I was just done with all the noise.
The world has been very loud lately, and Jesus has been very silent. I kept trying harder to hear His voice, but all my straining to hear wasn't working. It seemed like the harder I tried the quieter He got.
So I stopped trying. I put my finger to my lips and and let out a long and loud SHHHH!!!
In the last five months I've gone for a lot of long, quiet walks. I've filled a few journals. I've paid a counselor to listen to me. I've napped. I've said "no" a lot more than I've said "yes". I've let books gather dust. I've deleted blogs in my inbox without reading them. I've watched movies. I've laid in the grass. I've sat on the edge of the dock and stuck my toes in the water.
Five months ago I shushed the world because I was tired of all the noise. I haven't written a thing in five months because I didn't want to add to the noise. I still don't.
I'm not in a hurry to leave this place.
Jesus is still pretty quiet here. But I'm starting to hear whispers of what sounds like His voice. I was hoping that after a few months of quieting the world I'd have some sort of burning bush experience with Him. That's not the case. Instead it's just been two quietly whispered sentences; "Stop trying so hard. I love you."
It's the opposite of what I've been told my whole life. It's a message so foreign to me that at first I couldn't even decipher the words.
My whole life the message my heart has received is "if you want me to love you, you'll have to try harder than that". And so I did.
But I don't want to anymore. And so... here I am. Intentionally being quiet. Intentionally limiting the noise of my life. And it's surprisingly, refreshingly good.
There's room to breathe here, and room to listen.