Speaking Peace to His People

Tuesday in the second week of Advent, Year B
08 December 2020

Reading: Psalm 85: 1-2, 8-13

Scripture:  “Let me hear what God the Lord will speak, for he will speak peace to his people, to his faithful, to those who turn to him in their hearts.” (Psalm 85:8)

Reflection: Have you found that as our world has become more technologically advanced, it seems to have become busier and noisier? Sometimes even in a casual conversation, getting a word in requires a massive effort, especially when the ones speaking are convinced of the rightness of their position. If that has been your experience, then like me you welcome with open arms, those moments of quiet when you can retreat to a peace-filled space (literally and figuratively) where you can literally hear…your breath.

One important lesson that I have learnt in the course of this differently difficult time is that listening for/to God’ is not simply a matter of auditory acuity. Ability to hear God comes with training our hearts and minds to be still; it is about being open to God, anticipating His advent and according Him unrestrained welcome. There is a sense, therefore, in which the profusion of sites, apps and platforms, if not prayerfully and carefully navigated, can lead to confusion instead of providing space for divine incursion. The Psalmist is on point, therefore, in affirming that only when (the ears of) our hearts are attuned to Him that we will hear God speaking shalom into the turbulence of our lives.  

This enforced isolation then, has been a challenge, not only about being focussed about maintaining good health; it continues to challenge us, amidst the din of lifeworlds* to embrace the pause which is the Spirit’s invitation to be still, know and internalize God’s peace.

 Meditation: For five minutes, let the focus of your heart and mind be upon God alone. Let the words below, from Saint Teresa of Avila, lead you to the place where God awaits. Listen and hear, all that He has to say…to you.  

Let nothing disturb you; let nothing frighten you
All things are passing, God is unchanging.
Patience gains all;
nothing is lacking to those who have God:
God alone is sufficient.

Prayer: Gracious Father, may Your peace like a river, flood my being as I draw ever closer to You, that I can declare with bold confidence…“It is well; it is well with my soul”. Amen.

 *The commonplace, everyday traffic of life where…common values and presuppositions about order and the world are held. (Walter Earl Fluker 2009)