When Life Silences You…
So if you follow me at all or read even just a post or two here or there, you know that I talk a lot about communication. Really, that’s kind of all that I talk about pretty much. And I’ve mentioned once or twice (probably more than that) that silence is also a part of our communication. Everything that we say and do, of course, communicates to others, but what about all the times when we just don’t want to say anything? That silence is communication too.
On March 22, 2019, I had LIFE show up in an unexpected way. And what I found myself pondering as days turned into weeks was how LIFE can silence us. How our situations or circumstances can cause us to feel that we have nothing to say. Nothing to offer. Nothing to contribute. How our situations or circumstances can make us just not want to communicate.
But the irony of that desire for outward silence is that it tends to cause a loud, chattering chaos inside of our heads. As I wanted to be outwardly silent in those weeks, I was anything but silent toward myself. Life was silencing me outwardly and causing anything but silence in my head.
When life gives us something that we aren’t sure how to handle, we tend to get distracted and worried even. This distraction and worry get manifested in ways that impact the world around us. It’s not that we mean to; it’s just that we can’t seem to get out of our own heads (as the saying goes) long enough to be able to focus on other people.
During those weeks as I waited for a benign or malignant diagnosis, I was distracted. I saw my focus get shattered and my communication get silenced. Some days during those weeks, I just didn’t much feel like communicating at all. All I really wanted were my Bible and myself. The days seemed long, and the waiting was palpable.
Honestly, I felt a peace that I had only prayed would exist in a time like this. I was waiting with God for sure, and it was glorious. I knew that I needed time to focus on and shape what I was saying to myself. I needed time to rest in God’s truth. I needed time to be ready.
What we tell ourselves in these times is so crucial. That loud, internal chattering can be destructive, possibly more destructive than the circumstance that brought on the chatter. Getting our internal communication right is paramount to getting everything else right.
The world doesn’t wait for us to decide when to communicate. People still interact with us. Circumstances still call for us to interact. Life goes on, and we are expected to go with it. The world didn’t wait for me to want to communicate. People interacted with me and required my best. Circumstances came up that I had to speak into and handle. Life went on, and I went with it.
When life silences you as it did me, remember that you are equipped with a power that you should not underestimate. Your communicative powers give you reign over your internal and external communication. Using these powers in positive and grace-filled ways allows for even our silences to be honorable and respectful of others. You can (I did) absolutely live out Colossians 4:6 — “Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” (NIV)
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P.S. That picture of the lovely shoulder wrap is me at the hospital on the day of my biopsy. The diagnosis was benign. The lessons learned are priceless.
Connie Benoit Sirois
Author | Speaker | Trainer
We are called to love others as ourselves. Our communication gives us continual opportunities to do this. We should never miss a chance to honor others. I’d love for you to read about my mission.
Find out how to increase your ability to have a positive impact on others, even when situations and people are negative.