when one is mute

Most of the time in one way or another humankind is full of words. Of course there are the talkative people, the extroverts, always the life of the party, with plenty to say. Then there are the introverts who can be full of words themselves if you get them going (I’m mostly introvert I think). But regardless of our inclinations, and whether or not we treasure solitude, words are a big part of our existence. If we’re not talking we’re thinking or reading or hearing others.

There can be those times though when we really have nothing to say. When we would just as soon be quiet. Oh, there’s always the room for small talk, indeed we need to make room for it. To be open to conversation. And there are those occasions of silence. We call them “silent retreats.” They last for a few hours during which we say nothing. This is striking and noteworthy since we humans are indeed full of words.

When I am mute having nothing to say, then it may be good to be still, to simply listen. Of course I want to listen first and foremost to God. To hear God’s voice in and through Jesus. In something that might be impressed on me out of the blue. Or through something someone might say. And I want to hear others. Not only their words, but what might lie behind them.

We are blessed with all the words in the book of Job. There comes a place in that story when Job no longer has anything to say. He is spoken out. Maybe that’s where we need to be. We’ve had our say, perhaps along with others. Now it’s time for God to speak, and for us to listen. And be changed. In and through Jesus, together for the world.