SPEAK TO YOURSELF. LISTEN TO YOURSELF. IN THE CROSSFIRE OF DAYTIME VOICES, WE BECOME STRANGERS TO OURSELVES.
GET ACQUAINTED AGAIN WITH THE BEING THAT GOD CREATED, NOT JUST THE PASSPORT VERSION THAT YOU'VE USED TO GET MORE OR LESS SUCCESSFULLY THROUGH THE DAY. AND BE SILENT.
NOTHING MORE NEED BE SAID. NO EXPLANATIONS, NO BOAST, NO APOLOGIES. THIS IS WHO YOU ARE.
THERE IS SOMETHING MORE IMPORTANT THAN LIKING OR NOT LIKING YOURSELF, MORE IMPORTANT THAN THE DAYS ACCOMPLISHMENTS OR FAILURES; THERE IS YOU.
IN THE SILENCE SIMPLY BE THE PERSON
THAT GOD IS GATHERING INTO SALVATION.
I had this quote taped at my desk at work, next to Anne Mahlum's photo. I read this quote on as many mornings as I could. I had it to the left of my computer screen; there it was everyday like a friend, a guardian, an angel, whispering for me to remember to be silent.
I am taking this quote and taping to the wall of my volunteer quarters in Kissemah Village, to remind myself that sometime during each day I need to be silent. I need to be as Eugene H. Peterson says, more than the passport version of myself and simple be Elena.
We are all at times full of ideas, thoughts, notions, expectations of who we think we are; many defining ourselves by our bank balances or lack thereof, by the title on our business cards, by the relation we are to our families, immediate and extended, by the years we've known friends, co-workers, by the # of clubs and groups we belong to, by the status of our relationship with airlines, banks, and even restaurants.
Eugene H. Peterson is challenging the reader to simply be silent - silent in our minds, hearts, in our self-talk, and simple be who God created.
Wether you believe in God or not, the challenge and reward of being silent, of being still in your life, of getting acquainted with YOU, of harnessing the blessing of each deep and profound breath, letting go and breathing in again in silence and again, it is simply wonderful.
The quote is from Chapter 5, Rhythm, from the book Answering God, The Psalms as Tools for Prayer. The book was published in 1991, it was based on a class that the author taught in college about learning to read the Psalms.