By Cathy Chapman, Ph.D.
Life is filled with so many distractions that it is difficult to find the spiritual whispers that come your way. We become so used to electronic means of communication that we have lost the ability to listen for and hear the deep still voice that comes from within. There are times when a message comes through that reminds us of the power and love of God. To integrate that message into the daily movement of life, we must pause and be quiet. We forget to do that in this age of electronic marvels.
In medieval times European life revolved around the Christian tradition. Before Martin Luther nailed his Ninety-five Theses on the Whittenberg church door in 1517, the Christian tradition was overseen by the Pope. Theological discussions were held in the pubs and priests prepared themselves to debate with the people along theological lines. Daily life moved with the ebb and flow of what is called the liturgical year. Today we are aware of Christmas and, in most cases, Easter. Centuries ago the people would mark their lives with the various feast days of the saints and other major church celebrations. There wasn’t a great deal to distract people from religious concerns.
Of course, religious concerns and spiritual concerns are two different things. Luther would have never had to address the problems in the Catholic Church if the focus had been on the spiritual life and love of God and neighbor.
Today there are many things to distract us from focusing on God. Imagine what it must have been like to ride for days, or even an hour, with no other outside stimulation than conversation with the people you are with. If alone, you only had the distractions of your own thoughts and the scenery around you. Without the outside stimulation found in the modern world you could focus on your thoughts and the gentle movement of God within you.
If you wonder if God is with you, or even if there is a God, bring quiet to your life. Take time away from the electronics that surround you, the stimulation that bombards you every second of the day. Then simply ask, “God, if you are there, please reveal yourself to me.” In the quiet, listen. God may be everywhere but is heard in the deepest part of the self, within the heart. If you want to hear the whispers of love then you will need to put aside that which distracts you from hearing. You must open yourself to the quiet.