Facing my inner, silent self

I have so much I want to tell you about the swirling waters of my life and the excruciating, transformative, generative current in which I find myself swimming, sometimes with Olympic grace but more often with flailing gasps. Right now I can not find a way to collect all my thoughts, feelings and words to adequately communicate all that is transpiring in the evolutionary detour my journey is taking. Soon my friends, soon.

Until I can find my own words I want to share with you the meditation of another that spoke to me this morning from the pages of an Advent devotional.  I am experiencing Advent this year in a radically tangible way and this reading, for today, is exactly what I needed to hear – today.  Perhaps the words will be unto you a balm as well.

This reading is from God with Us: An Advent Journey with Thomas Merton, Mother Teresa & Henri Nouwen, edited by Steve Mueller and published  by All Saints Press in St. Louis. This devotional was shared at the beginning of the season with we weary and hopeful souls at Kirkwood UCC and to be honest I’ve hardly picked it up since the first week – life has a way.  This morning, in the quiet dark of a shifting reality, I picked up the wee collection and was immediately struck with a sense of this day’s message being just for me.  Funny how that works sometimes.

Here is the piece –

Facing our inner, silent self

“There is a silent self within us whose presence is disturbing precisely because it is so silent: it can’t be spoken but has to remain silent. To articulate it, to verbalize it, is to tamper with it, and in some ways to destroy it.

Our culture helps us evade any need to face this inner, silent self. We live in a state of constant semi-attention to the sounds of voices, music, traffic, or the generalized noise of what goes on all the time. This keeps us immersed in a flood of racket, words, a diffuse medium in which our consciousness is half diluted: we are not quite “thinking,” not entirely responding, but we are more or less there. We are not fully present and not entirely absent; not fully withdrawn, yet not completely available. We just float along in the general “noise,” the commotion and jamming which drown out the deep, secret, and insistent demands of the inner self.

With this inner self we have to come to terms in silence. That is the reason for choosing silence. In silence we face and admit the gap between the depths of our being, which we consistently ignore, and the surface which is untrue to our own reality.  We recognize the need to be at home with ourselves so that we may go out to meet others, not just with a mask of affability, but with real commitment and authentic love.”

-Thomas Merton
Love and Living 

Gracious and loving God,
Father, mother, brother
help me meet my inner, silent self
and to live into her wisdom.

Today I will…

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664 responses to “Facing my inner, silent self”

  1. Hello Kimberly I’m new to the blog world but I found your words waiting on my heart as I read your posts. I am a Christian mom struggling deeply with my sexuality. I have come out to my husband and a small network of friends. I do not have support from my peers. Thank you for your words and resources they spoke to my soul tonight.

    • Jenna,

      This is both a dark and wonderful valley through which you will travel. I have walked a similar journey (and will be writing in very raw and frank ways about it in 2014). If you would like to chat more you can find me on Facebook.

      Grace and peace,

  2. As I reflected on this, I thought of all of God’s vast creation and how nearly all of it lives in silence. Even if there is life making sound waves in thousands of other atmospheres, still the vast majority of creation attests to the goodness of God in holy silence. Silence is the spiritual air of the universe. And yet we live in cacophony, perpetually filling any potentially quiet moment with noise. We are as afraid of silence as we are of God’s presence. But the peace Jesus brings can overcome our fear of silence, our fear of ourselves, our fear of God.
    Thanks for sharing. Look forward to hearing your heart. Until then, content to wait in silence with you.