A friend of posts a unique message on her blog on Wednesdays. She calls it “Wordless Wednesday.” In the post, she offers beautiful photo images.
I have often wondered how she came up with the title, “Wordless Wednesdays.” Did she have writer’s block on a particular Wednesday? Did she borrow the title from another place? Did she know that on some days, she would simply have nothing to say, so she just planned it to be on Wednesdays?
It occurs to me that this is a Wednesday and I have nothing much to say. It seems like one of my empty days, when words don’t seem to emerge. My readers probably know that it is a very unusual state of being for me to not have anything to say. It rarely happens.
Sitting in my quiet time without words is a bit disconcerting for me. And yet, maybe without words, I can find a holy stillness, a silence in which God can talk to me. Maybe it is not a bad thing to be without words. Maybe a wordless stillness is exactly where God needs me to be.
A friend of mine has a way with wordless stillness. He loves nature and visits it every single day. And in the places he visits, his keen eye always catches breathtaking views of nature. I am struck by his images every time he posts them. Interestingly, he captures images from one particular place more often than not. He loves that view, capturing Arkansas sunrises, sunsets, and everything in between . . . always from that one spot. He admits it. He tells us straight up that this spot is his favorite view in Arkansas.
But here’s the thing I have discovered about his photographs of that Arkansas scene: what he captures, always, is stillness. Stillness without words.
Maybe wordless stillness is something all of us need to capture. God can find us in that place, that place that feels like Holy Ground. God can comfort us there, encourage us, forgive us, work in us, speak to our souls.
The Psalmist finds silence again and again:
Be still and know that I am God.
— Psalm 46:10 (NRSV)
For God alone my soul waits in silence,
for my hope is from him.
He alone is my rock and my salvation,
my fortress; I shall not be shaken.
— Psalm 62:5-6 (NRSV)
Elijah found silence on Horeb, the mountain of God:
“Go out and stand on the mountain before the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.” Now there was a great wind, so strong that it was splitting mountains and breaking rocks in pieces before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake; and after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire; and after the fire a sound of sheer silence.
— I Kings 19:11-12 (NRSV)
Wordless stillness. Silence in the presence of God. Holy Ground.