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Summary: To show that silence and solitude are essential for any disciple.

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-I’m reminded this morning a little of the movie from several years back now, “Castaway” with Tom Hanks

-In that movie, due to an airplane accident, Hanks’ character finds himself stranded alone on a deserted island with his only companion being a volleyball he named “Wilson”

-As we see him progress for hours, days, weeks, months and even years, we find him becoming a much different person

-Much of this is due to the fact that his world is different than it was

-No more modern conveniences

-No more hustle and bustle / stress

-No more noise

-No more companionship

-Yet, to a great degree, he is changed for the better

-He comes to realize the unimportance of such things

-He comes to know himself in a much deeper way than he could have with those things

-What Hanks’ character goes through is, in a sense, what every believer who longs to be a disciple of Christ needs to go through from time to time

-We need to go through regular, even weekly or daily, periods of silence and solitude

-These are spiritual disciplines that can assist believers in their growth in discipleship

-Periodically this year we will look at different spiritual disciplines

-We start this morning with silence and solitude

SILENCE

-Noises abound in our world

-Even out here, in the country

-Dogs howling

-Airplanes flying overhead

-Cars and trucks whizzing by

-Keith Drury said, “Silence is abstaining from sound in order to open our spiritual ears and listen more closely to the voice of God”

-Yet, silence is seldom desired in our society

-We fill every moment with noise

-The radio

-TV

-Communication

-Power tools / motors

-Yet, scripture hold silence in high esteem

-There is certainly a time for silence

-Ecclesiastes 3:1, 7

-There is certainly a scriptural call for silence

-Habakkuk 2:20

-Zephaniah 1:7

-There is certainly a promise of silence

-Isaiah 32:18

I. The Abundance Of Sound Clutter

A. Too much talking

Q: Have you ever known somewhat that spoke very little, but when they did you knew to listen because it was likely to be very important?

-There are actually few of those people around

-Rather speech and communication is the rule of the day

-We can’t even escape it anymore when we’re alone because of the prevalence of cell phones

1. By others

Q: Have you known people who simply talk too much?

-They always have something to say about everything

-And often about nothing

-Usually about themselves

2. By ourselves

-Excessive talking can only eventually show how little we truly know

-All of this trivializes speech to a great degree

-It reduces its meaning

B. Background noise

1. Imposed

-Those we have no control over

-Planes overhead

-Cars on the street

-People in public places

-The natural world

-Elevator music

2. Self-inflicted

-Turning on the TV as soon as we come in the house

-Keeping the radio up in the car

-Participating in boisterous activities

-Sporting events

-Going to public places / shopping

II. The Softness Of The Voice of God

A. Often He speaks in whispers

-I Kings 19:11-12

-It’s a strain to hear Him

B. Often in silence we come to know Him better


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Talk about it...

Tom Shepard

commented on Jan 17, 2008

Interesting subject matter. Thought provoking. Thanks Kemuel.

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