On the Back Porch

One of the blessings of living in the country is the quiet. I realize that I risk sounding like an old man, but I have always liked quiet.  And now you are laughing if you know me because I am a talker, a preacher, and have a strong voice.  I want my music turned up in my car so I can sing along, and I love the sound of 35 or more cars chasing each other around the track at Bristol Motor Speedway on a hot August night. Nevertheless, I really like quiet.  The reason I hike and run is to enjoy the quiet.  Most of the places my wife and I “get away” are places of quiet. That’s one of the reasons I love my back porch, which is where I am seated right now. Many times when my wife and I are eating out here, I will look at her and say, “Listen.”  A sound can barely be heard.

This world is full of noise.  People generally are uncomfortable with quiet.  They can’t sit still for more than 10 minutes.  The TV has to be on, the children screaming at the top of their lungs, and the dogs carrying on like it’s a full-moon.  So, when you consider being quiet, it makes most folks uncomfortable.

Caleb’s legacy is mostly one of being a genuine man of faith (Numbers 13-14).   There is a time mentioned in chapter thirteen that causes me to want to stand up and salute Caleb.  The ten spies have returned with their evil report of the land and created a disquieted heart in the people of Israel.  We read in Numbers 13:30, Then Caleb quieted the people before Moses, and said, “Let us go up at once and take possession, for we are well able to overcome it.”  Way to go, Caleb!  You did the best thing for those folks.  They needed to just be still and listen.

Does someone need to quiet you?  Have you been still enough today to hear the voice of God speaking?  Have you been tethered to your cell phone doing most of the talking? Has someone come to you with gossip, and you’ve had enough courage and desire for quiet in your own soul to say, “Shhh.  I don’t want to hear it.”  Much of what disquiets our heart is what we hear from the lips of others and from our own sinful heart.  This morning or sometime today, will you find your “back porch” and be still.  Enjoy the quiet and meditate on these four scripture passages:

Psalm 107:30 – Then they are glad because they are quiet; So He guides them to their desired haven.

Psalm 131:2 – Surely I have calmed and quieted my soul, Like a weaned child with his mother; Like a weaned child is my soul within me.

Proverbs 17:1 – Better is a dry morsel with quietness, Than a house full of feasting with strife.

Ecclesiastes 4:6 – Better a handful with quietness Than both hands full, together with toil and grasping for the wind.

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