After the commotion and busyness of the Christmas period and New Year’s Eve, the New Year can sometimes feel like being washed up on the beach after a storm. Having survived the tumult it does feel like there’s an opportunity: to take stock, to pause, to contemplate, and not to continue into the New Year in the same way as before.
In 1 Kings 19:11-12* God speaks to Elijah – this is after Elijah has run in fear for his life following the tumultuous events where the prophets of Baal are defeated, and then Jezebel threatens his death. When God speaks here he speaks with “the sound of a low whisper” but he is not in the commotion and tumult of the wind, quake and fire:
And he said, “Go out and stand on the mount before the LORD.” And behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind tore the mountains and broke in pieces the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind. And after the wind an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. And after the earthquake a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire the sound of a low whisper.
(1 Kings 19:11-12 ESV)
This New Year, 2012, is an opportunity: to pause, to disengage from the tumult, and to stop our habitual busyness.
When we do this,
when we clear the distracting clutter and chaff from our lives,
then we too can hear “the sound of a low whisper”.