In the Silence Name Me

posted Nov 8, 2019, 9:54 AM by Tricia Sheffield

Grace and peace to you! 

Holy One, untamed by the names I give you, in the silence name me, that I may know who I am, hear the truth you have put into me, trust the love you have for me, which you call me to live out . . . in your human family (Ted Loder).

After a phone conversation I had this week, and especially as the frenetic holiday season is upon us, I’ve been thinking about the spiritual discipline of being still.

When I was about seven years old, my family went to Georgia to attend our annual family reunion. It was a long weekend filled with folks catching up with each other, fun and games for the kids, worship at the local church, and food, food, and yes, more food. And this was Southern, greasy, yummy harden-your-arteries food.  It was fantastic! After one of these big dinners, I remember being in a large Social Hall at the church and running around non-stop, as I was a very active child. My mother often called me her free spirit. I think my “free spirit-ness” got on a lot of people’s nerves that day because my Dad and some of my great-uncles finally caught up to me and offered me a challenge. They said if I could sit still for five minutes, they would give me a dollar. My eyes gleamed. A whole dollar . . . that was a lot of money to a kid in the 1970s. Oh, I took that challenge and I took it quite seriously. I didn’t want to just sit still but I decided I was going to be a statue, and not make one single movement. I’d show them! Well, after those five minutes, I got my dollar, and then went right back to running around like I had before!  

I’m obviously not seven anymore, but I’m still my mom’s free spirit and when I do move, I still go pretty fast, although not as fast as I used to go. But you know what? Nowadays, I have no trouble sitting still and just being. No one has to pay me a dollar to do it; in fact, my introvert self requires it in order to get recharged. In these moments of recharging, I’ve learned something about being still, something about myself as I’ve grown up and grown into my faith. Being still and being quiet is a holy space in which to feel God’s unshakeable presence. In the spiritual discipline of being still and listening, there we find God; there God meets us; there God will always be, no matter what.

Come this Sunday at 10:30 AM to experience the all-encompassing, beautiful, grace-filled love of God in Christ Jesus. Nancy Coffin will be our featured soloist with the anthem, “Whither Thou Goest.” Marine Veteran Lynn Scarano, Air Force Veteran Bob Hofmann will be our liturgists, along with Dan Pannebaker as worship leader. I will be preaching from Isaiah 43.14-21 and 2 Thessalonians 2.1-5, 13-17 and my sermon title is Still Be Our Vision.

Be still. And know that God will consistently be there, will show up, is sovereign, in control of our world, and will continue to love us unconditionally. I invite you as you are reading this, or perhaps after you’ve finished reading, to stop and be still, close your eyes, and breathe. Let your entire being rest in God’s presence, believing and trusting these words from Scripture: Be still, and know that I am God (Psalm 46.10). 

In gratitude for the joy of being your Pastor and the holy call of loving you,

Pastor Trish