Reformed Reflections

From the Pastor's Desk 1980-1989

Silent Prayer

Silence is hard to come by in our noisy world. We are even warned against 'noise pollution.' But silence can be good for the soul. Someone wrote; "Real progress on the spiritual road begins only when we learn to be still and passive". All the teachers of the devotional life prescribe silence and passivity as an utter necessity for spiritual growth. Why do we have some moments of silence before we commence with our worship service? I suggest two reasons.

First, through silence we discover the inner world of our spirit. Out of silence come stirrings we didn't know existed within us. In church we experience silence as a communion of saints. Many people find it easier to be silent with others than alone.

Second, in silence we pray in preparation for our meeting with God. We offer our praise to God and ask for His blessings upon His people. So when the minister and the office-bearers enter the sanctuary, the organ ceases to play, the doors are closed and the call to worship is given. Right after this call we have our moments of silence in fellowship with others and in prayer to God. So in those moments believers seek to meet their Lord. And we conclude our silent prayer with the appropriate hymn:

"Hear our prayer, 0 Lord, Hear our prayer, 0 Lord, Incline Thine ear to us, And grant us Thy peace".

So our silence at the very beginning of the worship service is a meaningful spiritual exercise that can lead to growth of the inner spirit and to a closer fellowship with our covenant God.