I always have some sort of music going.
Part of my job is to care about the ambiance in a room, and music is one the BEST ways to set the tone (pun completely intended) for any environment. A good playlist at a good volume is almost all you need.
I have multiple playlists for all kinds of things. Writing, study, cleaning, reading, sleeping, working hard, dance party (obviously) . . . the list goes on. The result is this: hardly ever is my life filled with silence. Shocker . . .
I am a creature of habit. Habits can be healthy. Habits can be dangerous.
Habit can very quickly grow to need, which can very quickly result in addiction.
I have an addiction to noise.
I decided to break it.
Most mornings, I start my day with an hour or so of study and writing, listening to the voice of Jesus as best I can, but I always have music playing. I thought I would try it once without.
What started out as a peaceful, quiet morning turned very stressful, very quickly. The space of silence was filled almost instantaneously with voices flooding my mind with tasks I forgot, people I was failing, results I could not measure up to.
These voices were loud, harmonious – almost rehearsed – as if they were a practiced chorus singing together for years. And, maybe they have been.
Is it possible that beneath the noise of my busyness and productivity has been a steady soundtrack of negative thoughts – small reminders of my not-enoughness? That the music and people and coffee dates and email inboxes are actually the second layer of noise in my life – a convenient distraction from the true soundtrack I live my life to?
Sitting on the floor by my window in the morning, I was faced with a choice. I could either sit and listen to the soundtrack of defeat or I could press STOP. I can press STOP.
Do you hear that?
This quiet is not ethereal, it’s real. Did you know you have the power to tell the lies filling your mind that you are no longer listening?
That you were made for a different song.
I didn’t expect it, what happened next.
I closed my eyes and opened my hands and asked God what he would like to speak to me. I told him I was ready now to hear it, with the space in my head and heart cleared out . . .
He could have said anything in that moment – I was open to hear it. Correction, direction, anything . . .
The quiet was pierced – pierced – with this: “I love you, Jenni. I love YOU.”
Knowing a thing is different than hearing a thing.
I wonder how long I’ve been functioning on knowledge or a memory of a long ago conversation with my Savior reminding me of His love.
I’m confident it’s not so much that He has not been speaking it over me all along, but that I have been drowning out his voice with soundtrack upon soundtrack of distraction.
Maybe you have been too.
Are you desperate to hear God, but are choosing to listen to the lie that his voice cannot be heard?
Are you filling all of your empty space with busyness and hard work and good things, leaving no space for hearing?
Are you sitting in your place right now, asking of God to speak his direction over you – asking him to give you wisdom, pleading for your next step, but you are ignoring the only thing he wants to say to you: “I love You.”
It’s enough. It’s everything. You are loved by God, and that is the song you were created to live your life to.
“I have loved you, my people, with an everlasting love.
With unfailing love I have drawn you to myself.”