“Go out and stand on the mountain, before the lord . . . and after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire; and after the fire a sound of sheer silence”
— 1 Kings 19: 11–12
IN A QUIET PERSONAL MOMENT, A FORTUNE 500 COMPANY WAS SAVED
A friend of mine, Bob, was in the process of selling an important asset. The sale would be a crucial part of his future and success. Bob was determined to be a good seller. To not hide anything from the buyer and provide the buyer with a product that exceeded their expectations. Bob responded faithfully to all the buyer’s requests and went further than his lawyer or broker expected him to go. But the requests didn’t end. After each obstacle was resolved, another popped up. A meeting was scheduled between all the parties to find a clear path to resolution.
“He prayed for God to give him the wisdom to make the right decisions with his business and to help his wife.”
The day before the meeting Bob’s wife announced that the doctor had found something during her checkup that needed a radiologist’s opinion. The appointment with the radiologist was scheduled at the same time as my friend’s important meeting. His wife told him to go to the meeting and she would be okay. Bob felt besieged. How can I ignore my wife? But how can I secure our future? He prayed throughout the day. He prayed for God to give him the wisdom to make the right decisions with his business and to help his wife. Then he went to the meeting and his wife went to the radiologist.
During the meeting, there were many questions. Tough questions. My friend answered them all honestly. At one point the broker for the buyer became unrelenting. Bob felt a spirit of resolve fall over him and became quietly serious. Normally Bob’s mannerisms were friendly and engaging, but now he became dead serious and firm. Looking firmly into the eyes of the buyer and without hesitation he stated, firmly and in a quiet tone, “If there is a problem, I will pay to have it resolved. It is what I have done to this point and will continue to do.” He left the meeting wondering about his wife and at the same time about the state of this important sale.
“A wave of joy overcame him. While Bob had waited in silence, God had answered his prayers.”
At home he sat in his favorite chair and waited in silence. A short time passed and he got a call. The broker said, “It is done, you have done everything and had no more to do. The sale is going forward.” Shortly after, his wife called and stated that the radiologist had found nothing serious and she would need some minor medical attention only. My friend rested. A wave of joy overcame him. While Bob had waited in silence, God had answered his prayers. No great bell was rung, no fireworks, just a brief moment and the quiet winds of life had brought his answer. Life was back in balance.
“But then in a moment, a quiet personal moment, we hear God’s voice. We are reminded that God is with us.”
How many times have we all worried about life? We go to pray and we are still tested. We hear no answer from God and we wonder where God is. But then in a moment, a quiet personal moment, we hear God’s voice. We are reminded that God is with us. God talks to us sometimes in sheer silence, when we are open and ready to hear. Not necessarily with loud clanging or grandiose fireworks, but in a deeply personal way that restores our faith. In this moment we know God has passed by like a cool summer breeze. Emmanuel, God is with us.
Blessings, until next time,
Bruce L. Hartman
What moments of our lives have we heard the sheer silence of God?
How does God let us know that it is him who has answered?
In reflection, how do we think back on those events?