The Calm Before The Storm

The Discipline of SilenceWednesday is a day of silence in the final week in the life of Jesus. There is no biblical reference to any activity on the part of Jesus or the disciples.

We can only assume what might have gone on that day. Did Jesus spend time alone in prayer as was his custom? Did he enjoy the closeness and fellowship of friends?

Whatever Jesus did, that Wednesday was the calm before the storm. In a few hours he would be facing arrest, trials, beatings and ultimately crucifixion.

Most of us find silence difficult.

We try to fill the emptiness of our hearts with noise and busyness. Noise keeps us from focusing on those things we don’t want to think about.

“Silence is frightening because it strips us as nothing else does, throwing us upon the stark realities of our life.” – Dallas Willard, The Spirit of the Disciplines

But this is a silent Wednesday. Here we learn the discipline of quieting every voice, including our own inner voice as well as outer voices, so we can hear God.

If the mission of Jesus were marked with times of silence, we too need this habit.

Why should we practice the habit of silence?

  • To follow the example of Jesus
  • To better hear God’s voice
  • To regain spiritual perspective
  • To affirm God’s will
  • To prepare for difficult times
  • To help withstand trials

Give the discipline of silence a try.

Grace and Peace,
Terry

Related Posts from 7 Days Leading Up To Easter

    1. Sunday – What Kind Of Entry Was It?
    2. Monday – 12 Things Children Can Teach Us This Easter
    3. Tuesday – Seeing The Unnoticed
    4. Wednesday – The Calm Before The Storm
    5. Thursday – How Washing The Disciple’s Feet Pictures The Incarnation
    6. Friday – It’s Friday But . . .
    7. Saturday – Between The Cross And The Empty Tomb

      Seeing The Unnoticed

      The final day of Jesus’ public ministry was on Tuesday of that last week. It was a long day of confrontation, controversy and rejection. Mark records the stories of this day starting in Mark 11:20 and continuing through Mark 14:9.

      Let’s look at one of those stories told by Mark – a widow Jesus observed giving her offering in the temple courts.

      We are not going to talk about the offering. We are not going to consider the men who made a big show of their gifts or even the woman who quietly gave out of her poverty.

      I want us to consider Jesus and how he noticed the unnoticed. I think we can learn a lot about the mission he sends us on from his example.

      Jesus sat down opposite the place where the offerings were put and watched the crowd putting their money into the temple treasury. Many rich people threw in large amounts. But a poor widow came and put in two very small copper coins, worth only a fraction of a penny.

      Calling his disciples to him, Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others. They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything—all she had to live on.” Mark 12:41-44 NIV

      Do you take time to notice?

      It does not seem that the widow gave her offering to be noticed in contrast to those who made their giving a big show, but Jesus saw her in her quietness.

      Sometimes we are distracted by the loud, boisterous show of some while neglecting to see the quiet ones around us. Sometimes we’re just too consumed by our own agenda to notice.

      Wasn’t Jesus always noticing those around him; the city of Jerusalem, the widow, a friend who denied him, a thief on a cross next to his? He sets the example for us to keep our eyes open.

      Take some time today to notice those around you.

      Grace and Peace,
      Terry

      Related Posts from 7 Days Leading Up To Easter

        1. Sunday – What Kind Of Entry Was It?
        2. Monday – 12 Things Children Can Teach Us This Easter
        3. Tuesday – Seeing The Unnoticed
        4. Wednesday – The Calm Before The Storm
        5. Thursday – How Washing The Disciple’s Feet Pictures The Incarnation
        6. Friday – It’s Friday But . . .
        7. Saturday – Between The Cross And The Empty Tomb

          5 Purposeful Life Habits

          If we take the time to observe our lives we can see how habitual we are.  We do the same thing today that we did the day before and the day before that and so on.  Some of our habits help us fulfill the mission God has sent us on and live purposeful lives and some hinder us.

          Beth and I have developed a practice of making a pot of coffee in the evening to enjoy as our day winds down. I know some of you don’t drink coffee after a certain time of the day because it would hinder your sleep, but it seems that the two of us don’t have that problem. So this nightly process has become our habit.

          For the past year or so I have become more conscious of some life habits that really help me live with purpose in my walk with Christ. In some way or other, I guess I have practiced these disciplines for the last 40 years or so but I have recently become more aware of how important they really are. Now I try to live my life with a continual awareness of these movements on a daily basis.

          As Christ followers we should be developing practices or regular patterns that lead us to be more like Jesus. Here are five life habits that I try to practice regularly:

          • Linking together with the triune God and other people
          • Loving God, my brothers and sisters in Christ and those who are not yet in relationship with him
          • Listening to God through his Word and one another
          • Looking to see where God is working in my life and the lives of those around me
          • Leaving to live on mission with God

          What about you? Which of the above mentioned practices would you like to be more aware of in your life?

          Grace and Peace
          Terry

          P.S. Many of the ideas and stories you will find here at Coffee Cup Conversation will center on these and other life habits. Specific posts can be found in my category list so feel free to look around.