I have a lot to be thankful for this weekend.
Even though I am still trying to figure out my next steps – can you believe it? – I am thankful for so many voices of advice and guidance.
Yet sometimes I think that I am receiving so much friendly advice that it becomes overwhelming and in fact leads to even more confusion than I had before.
I’ve been praying for clarity, but maybe I need to pray for silence.
Do you ever get to a point where you realise you are praying or working or asking for something specific and really the answer to your prayer/work/request is something completely different?
For me, clarity really means silence.
This reality certainly does not detract from the thanks I have given and will continue to give to those who support and guide me, but it does give me an awareness of the filter I need to put up in my mental and emotional space to be able to clearly move forward.
Indeed, clarity and silence are synonymous for me.
In silence – meditating on God’s word in God’s presence – I gain clarity.
And it is such a clear and evident truth, yet one I sometimes miss.
I am thankful for today where I was able to spend an hour just resting in God’s presence in prayer and reading the Word. It allowed me to silence the clutter and chaos of well-meaning advisors and turn my ear to God’s voice alone.
Even though I am not yet where I want to be, I know that I will get there because ‘the testing of my faith produces endurance…’. (James 1:3)
And I will endure; I will keep going until the end.
What (or whom) do you need to silence to gain clarity?
Sometimes it is hard to find a moment to yourself. And sometimes when you do find a quiet moment, it is not so quiet because your thoughts overpower the silence. It can be hard to let go of the distractions and embrace the silence, can’t it? It sure is for me anyway!
I find that my best moments of peace, quiet and being able to hear and appropriately react to my internal guidance system, i.e. my heart and gut, is when I am walking or sitting outside. I truly feel God’s presence most prevalently in nature – his handiwork.
But if it’s too cold outside – as it often is in England – what do I do then? I keep walking – or pacing – up and down my bedroom. And then I kneel. But always I pray and sing and worship. Because I think you can drown out the noisy distractions of your negative, fearful or confusing thoughts with the peaceful sounds of positive declarations – Jesus’ name, positive affirmations, an upbeat song, a breathing meditation. Whatever your ‘thing’, make it work for you.
Finally, as I am slowly making my way out of the murky waters of confusion, I notice that even my writing today has been a little more haphazard and perhaps confusing to follow. So, to sum up the ideas above, I hope I provided three tried-and-tested practices to use today to make your tomorrow clearer, brighter and more fruitful:
 Start with thanks.
 Meditate on something positive in alignment with your purpose.
 Trust and follow your gut.
On meditation, I believe it can be significant contributor to inner peace, stability and contentment. So if you’d like to read more about meditation and mindfulness to alleviate stress and anxiety, and to enjoy its healthy perks, here are two easy reads on the subject:
- Wherever you go, there you are – by John Kabat-Zinn
- Mindfulness in Plain English – by H Gunaratana
I hope you can find your clarity in confusion; silence in the chaos, and an answer to your life’s conundrum(s).
What are your best ways to combat confusion? What are your best ways to embrace the silence?