On a Sunday morning, things at church are hopping. People are everywhere, the building is in full use, everything is busy. The same thing happens on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. We are a host site for senior lunches in the community on those days, so from about 10am until shortly after noon, there are people milling about, enjoying the facilities.
During certain times of the year, evenings are similar, but in the gym hallway. The YMCA rents our gym for various sports (volleyball, basketball), so in the evenings and on Saturdays there’s all kinds of activity and noise happening.
Tuesday mornings a group of cyclists park in our lot and use the bathroom before heading out on a ride. One Thursday each month the plarning group gathers and turns plastic shopping bags into mats for the homeless. So there are pockets of time all over when we have people and activities around the building and property.
But most afternoons are quiet. The people have left, the lights in the fellowship hall are turned off. Our staff is small and not all of us are even here at the same time every day. Sometimes I’ll even be working here alone for a few hours. It can be nice, but it can also be a bit lonely.
There is something special to the quiet, though. God’s Word makes reference several times to finding Him in the quiet:
Bestill, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth! Psalm 46:10
Better is a handful of quietness than two hands full of toil and a striving after wind. Ecclesiastes 4:6
For thus said the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel, “In returning and rest you shall be saved; in quietness and in trust shall be your strength.” Isaiah 30:15
The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing. Zephaniah 3:17
Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; Psalm 37:7a
And he awoke and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Peace! Be still!” And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. Mark 4:39
And finally, there is Psalm 23:
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters.
He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness
for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord
I pray that all of us find space for quiet stillness before the Lord. If you need a place, stop by church any afternoon during the week! The sanctuary is always open and available.