I was sitting on my couch looking through my phone, with the TV on the in the background. I felt this ache, and ache to JUST STOP. everything. My body craved some silence, but I thought spending 2 hours watching my favorite show meant “rest.” After these two hours were up, I still felt the same… tired, worn out, & ready for a break. It wasn’t until I put my phone down & turned off my TV that a felt a huge sigh of relief… On the inside I said, “finally.” In that moment I was able to unplug, with nothing in the background or right in front of my face…
It’s been on my mind lately what it would actually look like to unplug… no endless scrolling & meaningless material. In college I took a class that taught the discipline of silence & solitude. We took a whole day off of class & drove up to the most majestic catholic seminary with acres and acres of the most breathtaking scenery… we left behind all electronic devices & our words. All we had were our notebooks, tennis shoes, the outdoors & Jesus. I can’t even begin to describe how glorious that day was… especially for an overworked college student. The first two hours were such a struggle to actually unplug… but after laying on the grass next to the lake and listening to the birds chirp I realized how much my body so deeply desired some unplugging. For once in a long time I had the FREEDOM to JUST BE! As the sun went down that day, I so badly wanted to leave my phone shut off & not have to worry about daily burdens. I actually became so content without all the extra noise!
You see our generation is filled with constant clatter… the music in restaurants, tv screens everywhere, multiple forms of social media… does it ever end? Is the background noise really necessary?! NO! It’s just habitual.
Maybe we cram our days full of noise because we are afraid of what we will have to face in the silence… for some that might mean painful thoughts, anxious feelings, or maybe a conviction that we are actually addicted to constant noise. GUILTY! I have friends who have openly admitted to me that they fill their days to the brim because they are too nervous to have some quiet time because they know some darkness would come to the surface. They are afraid to face those thoughts, feelings & convictions.
Often times sitting in silence feels so uncomfortable to me, when I have a moment of silence my first instinct is to grab my phone… but here’s the thing friends, our bodies so desperately need the silence! We need the time to process, unplug & restore ourselves. We need to allow our thoughts come to the surface so we can find true healing.
Next time you sit down to drink your morning cup of coffee I challenge you to leave the TV off, turn off your music & leave your cell phone screen locked… I can guarantee to you that once you get past your restless feelings of needing noise, you will find deep delight in the silence!