Lately as I face one of the greatest traumas of my life, God has had me focus on Psalm 62. In recent days I’ve memorized it.
The version I’m using is the Amplified, and the words that keep jumping out at me have to do with silence.
These words calling for silence are used twice in the psalm. The first is in verse 1 “From God alone my soul waits in silence; from Him comes my salvation.” The second time is in verse 5: “My soul, wait only upon God and silently submit to Him; for my hope and expectation are from Him.”
When it comes to silence, I’m failing.
I’m discovering that instead of depending only on God’s words to my soul or believing in the power of silent prayer, I keep thinking my words will make a difference.
I sense that God wants me to be silent—at least about “issues,” instead of speaking to the loved one who is suffering. My delusion is, “If she would just listen to me and receive the truth and wisdom I’m offering, things will get better.”
Instead of praying diligently by myself and with others about this trauma, I too often choose to talk incessantly about it. Often the talking just makes me feel worse, especially when the focus is not on God and His ability to help and heal but instead I relate how hard this situation is and voice aloud what horrendous things have happened or may occur in the future.
I’m discovering that silence can keep me from sabotaging my faith.
On the days when I’m quiet knowing that He alone can save the day and be the redeemer, I sense His peace.
It’s the remnants of codependency in me which urge me to believe that silence is not the right course. Surely this person needs to hear this, I think.
But the Lord knows when people are not listening. He knows when words we say will be taken the wrong way and will be twisted, which has been happening.
And so I am still seeking to learn how to be silent. I’m apologizing when I’m not.
These instructions have also come from the Lord:
Give wise reproof only to listening ears. (See Proverbs 15:31)
Be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry. (See James 1:19)
One commentary on Psalm 62 states this about the silence mentioned there: not as to prayer, but as to murmuring; patiently and quietly waiting for salvation until the Lord’s time comes to give it; being “subject” to him…resigned to his will, and patient under his afflicting hand: it denotes a quiet, patient, waiting on the Lord.
This is my year of learning to trust God more, and He has promised that this will be my best year of trusting Him.
Learning to be silent is a part of my learning to trust Him more.
Part of silence is listening, leaning on the Lord, learning to wait in peace and to find rest in Him rather than thinking I can’t have rest unless I change the circumstance.
Psalm 62:1 in the NIV Bible states this: “My soul finds rest in God alone…” (1984)
I keep thinking I will find rest by setting things right. I try to do that through many words, but the Word of God promises: When there are many words, sin is unavoidable, but the one who controls his lips is wise. Proverbs 10:19 HCSB
But I’m learning again as I have so many other times in difficult days that’s it’s not my job to fix people or circumstances. There’s no way I can be the healer or redeemer. Only He can.
Even as I lectured recently instead of listening, the person who is at the center of this trauma that has invaded our lives said, “You could pray.” She was right. I need to pray instead of say. And silently depend on the Lord.
“Silence” by Anthony Evans (FYI: son of Pastor Tony Evans and former Voice contestant)