The Noise in the Silence

I was laying there this morning, trying to silence my thoughts so that I could center myself, allowing me to focus on God.  The sunlight was piercing through the layers of leaves, shadows dancing through the window and across the walls.  And for a moment, everything was still. 

Then the fire alarm went off.  Only for a couple of seconds, but it was enough to feel like I was hit by a freight train.  The ringing echoed long after the flashing light went dark and the wailing siren went silent.  And my thoughts began to fill the silence that was so serene.  It seems like anywhere I go, I can never find a way to completely silence my thoughts, fears and expectations. 

Over the past week, I’ve found myself thinking a lot about my time in Africa, my experiences on that Dark Continent that brought light and meaning into my life.  At night I see the faces of children, of friends, of wise old men and loving women whose wrinkles are a testament to their will to survive.  I lie awake at night and I can still hear them laughing, I can still hear the words of friendship, the whispers of knowledge echoing in the darkness.

I cannot think without visions of my journey swirling back, filling the void in my mind.  I can still see the rising sun chase away the dark of night over that small clinic in Uganda.  I can still see the smiling faces as they come through the serving lines of the Africa Mercy Dinning Hall.  I can still see the wreckage scattered across St. Louis and the devastation of Joplin.

And at times, when my mind begins to drift, I can still feel the gentle rocking of the ship beneath my feet and the hands of children pulling at my fingers, leading me down the red trail into the unknown. 

In these moments I find myself smiling, knowing that God is constantly reminding me of all that I have learned over the years.  He is making sure I never forget where I’ve been and who I have become. 

I used to fear the silence because it was a constant reminder of what I have seen, what I have lived through, all that I feared.  I now know that it is a blessing, a time ro reflect back on all the experiences that I have been blessed with.

God Bless and PEACE

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