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Sheer Silence

Thomas Whitley

1 Kings 19:11b-12: Now there was a great wind, so strong that it was splitting mountains and breaking rocks in pieces before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake; and after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire; and after the fire a sound of sheer silence.

It was in the sheer silence that Elijah met his God. The Hebrew actually says a "small whisper voice," which is more appropriate than "sheer silence," not because "silence" is bad but because we never truly experience "silence." For, it is just when we quiet ourselves that we are able to hear the "small whisper voice" of humanity, nature, God.

Elijah met God on a mountain. Sam met God in the woods:

In the Woods: I fumbled through my bag in the darkness and found the pen I had brought with me. I scribbled my name in the damp and cold wood of the shelf above me with 1 Kings 19 underneath, smiled and fell back to sleep before another long day in the woods with my students.

Where will you meet God?