Thursday, February 23, 2012

What's the buzz?

Yesterday's noon Ash Wednesday service had a strange buzzing noise.

It was like being in a room with mosquitoes.

Turns out that there is some kind of radio interference with our sound system.

It also turns out that the sound has been there for quite a long time but we never noticed it before because whenever we are in church, we use the organ. Part of the organ leaks air...a kind quiet hiss emanates from beneath the Great and also from under the Positiv. We have been trying to fix the leaks. We can't seem to get ahead of them, they seem to be built-in. Mind you it is not as if you've stuck your head inside a jet engine. It's just a hiss. Some days there are good days and some days not so good. But yesterday we had no organ. We wanted the service to be in silence. No music. No hiss.

But we also needed the sound system for our microphones. And so we get the mosquitoes.

So all through the service I kept thinking "Great. Another service call."

And close behind that "Solemn silent service? Fail!"

You know, I hate to whine, Lord, but I really don't need the technological assistance.

I can distract myself just fine.

When I try to take time for silence, when I sit, take deep breaths and try to clear my head, I want to enter God's presence. In the silence, I want to get behind the noise and listen for that still small voice. But there are always mosquitoes.  They are there.

What phone call have I not returned?
What e-mail do I need to answer?
What step in that project have I neglected?
What person did I not attend to?
What bill have I not paid?

There next to the silence is the buzz. It does not go away.

But neither does God.  No matter what the buzz is, there is God speaking to us. Holding us up. Being our companion. Whatever noise there is, God's silence is behind it always speaking to us.

Which means that sometimes God uses the noise to trick us into silence. Sneaky.

Who knew that those pesky leaks were also a kind of white noise machine that blocked out the electronic mosquitoes? Who knew that just turning on the organ would make its own kind of silence?

So that's the buzz? That's God getting past our own little noisemakers to speak right to our hearts.

The First Thursday of Lent
February 23, 2012

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