I was researching Carey Nieuwhof on the internet as he is coming out to Australia to speak at a conference in a few months time. I was reading his blog and came across two challenging thoughts.

Firstly there was what he referred to as the “Silence Test”. The silence test simply means sitting alone in silence for 10 minutes or longer. It is something we rarely do in our busy lives and it is quite challenging. Personally I find that I set aside time for silence but instead of sitting I find myself in the kitchen washing dishes or in the laundry sorting clothes. It seems any kind of chore is preferable to silence. Like Carey says when we are silent for any length of time all sorts of emotions come to the surface. These emotions can be quite irrational and we are unsure where they are coming from. God gave us emotions as a kind of warning light like we find on the dashboard of our car. The flashing light isn’t the problem but it is telling us there is a problem under the bonnet. Likewise negative emotions are not the problem but they point to a problem in our lives. Often our reaction is to cover the negative emotion in the hope it will go away which makes as much sense as putting a band aid over the flashing light on the car’s dashboard in the belief that it will fix the problem. God is more than willing and able to fix whatever is wrong in our lives if we will have the courage to deal with it. However the first step in facing what is going on in our lives is to spend some time sitting in silence before the Lord.

And the second challenging thought I’ll share next time.