It must have been about the 38th hour of that 24 hour day, and by that time, just about everything seemed ridiculously hard. I don’t even know how long I had been standing there, trying to get the plastic lid to fit down over my soft drink. The young woman moved up next to me and said, “Having trouble?” I suddenly realized that there were indeed other people on the planet with me, and two of them were waiting patiently at the soda fountain for me to finish so they could fill their cups and move on.
Silence is rare in our every day life yet at the same time it is more important than ever before. We need to give our senses a break every now and then. Otherwise this storm of lights, sounds and smells that surrounds us daily would crush us. But unfortunately often enough we are unable to find it, not just because our surroundings are so loud but also because we have a hard time finding it in ourselves. Yet sometime the need for silence becomes a true craving. What is this craving? I believe it is God asking us to listen. Not just to Him but also to ourselves. It is God’s way of inviting you to give yourself a break and spend some quality time with him. It is an invitation to become intimate with God, to be with him in a deep, all consuming silence where you can feel him closer than at any other time.
But what about prayer then?
Many years ago during a holiday in Switzerland I met a stranger. I sat at the Lake Geneva, looked out at the great fountain and enjoyed the sun. It wasn’t the best day. I wasn’t sure what to do with my life. Back then I was only 20 years old and all I knew was that I felt a calling but until then I had no idea what it was. Suddenly a young man sat down next to me. He looked middle eastern and English was certainly not his first language. He introduced himself as Yusuf and began to talk.