The Chesapeake Bay fueled my terror of lightning. One afternoon, a dark shadow hung over my Daddy’s boat before a bright flash bounced off a crab pot, and a sharp pain sliced through my arm as it hung over the side of the boat. For years after, Momma closed all the doors to the bedrooms and sat with me in the hallway during lightning storms. We leaned against her record/stereo player that we had to turn sideways to scoot around. Simon and Garfunkel, Motown greats, James Taylor, John Denver—whichever she was in the mood for that afternoon—drowned out the thunder.
Today, I heard again a remake of Simon and Garfunkel’s song The Sound of Silence, by Disturbed. I sang along to the words and returned to that hallway watching the water droplets slip down Momma’s tea glass, praying away the storm. You can hear the song by clicking below.
It was in 1965 Simon and Garfunkel released the song, The Sound of Silence. Simon claimed he’d written it as a twenty-one-year old in a dark bathroom while the water ran in the sink. He said, it was just a youthful yearning for someone to listen to me. I hear much more than that. The poetic lyrics warn of worshipping the pop culture gods we create, believing mass media, engaging with things instead of people, and not communicating. Hearing it today against the backdrop of the Corona virus the song seemed to be prophetic in a weird sense. Although the song is one of my favorites, as an abiding follower of Jesus Christ I hear the despair in its message because the song closes without offering any hope or light in the end…only darkness and silence.
But here’s truth…Light isn’t quiet. Our Heavenly Father is still speaking throughout the storms of life. Throughout this quarantine at the farm, I’ve heard Him loud and clear.
On Passover night, I heard Him in the brilliance of a super moon, He said, “And there will be signs in sun and moon and stars, and on the earth distress of nations in perplexity because of the roaring of the sea and the waves, people fainting with fear and with foreboding of what is coming on the world.” Luke 21:25-26 English Standard Version.
On an early morning walk I heard Him in the mixture of fog and sun settling over the pond. He said, “I have wiped out your transgressions like a thick cloud. And your sins like a heavy mist. Return to me for I have redeemed you.” Isaiah 44:22 (NIV)
On a walk in the woods we discovered tons of wild blueberry bushes and I heard my God. He said, “Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your Heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?” Matthew 6:26 ESV
In the earnest prayers of my daughter as she points to a country on a map praying God will protect Australia from Corona. My Father said, “Whoever humbles himself (herself) like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 18:4 (ESV)
Surrounding the farmhouse wild yapping sounded from every direction, as our dog Franklin sprinted into the darkness to fight off the coyotes alone, my Father said, “For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now.” Romans 8:19-22 ESV
In the garden planting tomatoes my God said, “Sow for yourselves righteousness; reap steadfast love; break up your fallow ground, for it is time to seek the Lord, that He may come and rain righteousness upon you. Hosea 10:12 (ESV)
And on a night when lightening flashed and thunder boomed, and the television screamed tornado, I stood in the swirling wind and heard my Father said, “It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; He will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.” Deuteronomy 31:8 (ESV)
Masks can quiet prayers.
Fear can squelch faith.
Distance dims lights.
Don’t let it. Remember Who your Father is, and who He made us to be…
Communicators, Faith Builders, and Lighthouses
Till next time!