When was the last time you paused and stood absolutely still and silent for one minute? When was the last time you went to a place of solitude and did nothing more than listen to the quiet? I walked my favorite trail at Radnor Lake State Park again today. Even after so many times, it still feels like I’m leaving Middle Tennessee for Middle Earth. I feel like I could be Frodo Baggins out for a hike in the Shire. When I stood still, I could hear nature all around me. Leaves rustling, birds singing, wind humming. Even myself thinking. I think God speaks loudest to me in the quiet. When I’m still and my brain isn’t racing with 9,956 tabs open at the same time. Like He did with Elijah, God often chooses to speak through a still, small voice that won’t compete with all the noise and clamor around us. I can hear that Voice when I’m at Radnor Lake and when I’m sitting in St. Paul’s Episcopal Church or when I’m laying in bed late at night. I confess I’m still not very good at listening. I’m still too impatient and easily distracted. If I try to be still, immediately I think of something I need to do or a note I need to write. Complete stillness is so unnatural for me. For all of us.
I need to get out more. And by out, I mean to these quiet places with no flashing neon lights or constant noise. Sometimes I think I could be like Mr. Thoreau and find myself a Walden Pond to visit for a while. Yeah, that’d be nice.