Having recently returned from Africa we are greeted with many things, meeting family, reconnecting with friends and colleagues or better co-workers in the work of restoring and redeeming this world so that it will display the Christ. How good it is to see familiar things around, things that we have grown up with, things that bring back memories of good times. What would life be like with out these?
Being away for 8 weeks brings its challenges, things that were so part of life when we left, we had forgotten, but the minute we return they rush back in on us. One of the biggest things that greets us as we arrive is a world full of sounds, some sounds bring a smile and some sounds are simply just noise. Certainly we left a world in Africa where the silence is deafening, the kind of silence that invades you and makes itself known inside, bringing tranquil times.
A world with full on noise, this is our island. We live close to the M6 by the constant drone of tires turning on tarmac highways, all the shops have their music, the bustle of people with their own internal chatter and noise, a world where you find difficulty some times to find silence. We are never that far away however from finding that silence that is stilling and ministering. I wonder what sounds are near to you as you read this, what sounds fill your world and endorse or disturb the inner Sabbath?
What is your ear tuned to now as you read, your own inner thoughts, music in the background or just the noise of your house creaking and making sure you know it’s there? What comes your way through this one channel of hearing, this gateway into your inner life?
The Psalmist presents to us a sound in his ear Psalm 92:11, he tells of what has invaded his still life, his inner listening. He tells us to open up, that a certain sound will break through a sound I would suggest that would transform many worlds.
He says “…My ears are filled with the sounds of promise: “Good people will prosper like palm trees, Grow tall like Lebanon cedars; transplanted to God’s courtyard, They’ll grow tall in the presence of God, lithe and green, virile still in old age.
Sounds of promise, our world so often volunteers to people sounds of let down, disappointment and criticism and this world is hearing a different sound a sound that our world too could embrace. A sound filled with sounds of promise, a sound that will groom and direct, that would live and empower that would change your view of God and your self, if only the promises are kept living. Sounds of promise!
Promises, be bold and recall, bring back to memory a promise, promises that have been spoken. But you don’t understand you might say they disappointed me, my challenge to believe then that creates a sound that governs once again. Let them arise promise of old that were yours once and should be again. We are to be people of promise and promise – blessing.
You see we say “faith is the hope of things” so hope is necessary to come to faith let me put into you that memory is the seed or foundation of hope. The world around knows if I can fill your memory with negative, if I can rob your memory no hope will come so faith cannot be born. The fight is not with your faith it’s often in the realm of memory. Sounds of promise let memory bring them back and let them live again. Let your era be filled with sounds of promise again. We become a promised filled people.
The psalmist in this passage outlines three things I notice here as a character of those who have turned to you in and the experience of life they are involved with.
1 What a beautiful thing – thankfulness, presence, continuously, adding to beauty by my voice and motion
2 You made me so happy – joy, magnificent work, thoughts made known.
3 Ears filled with sounds of promise – Gods people impartation to
So this person, you are to be filled with beauty, joy, promises. For they live in such a way that they look for beauty, joy and promises a trinity of life.
Looking for beauty, adding to beauty, being part of beauty that brings forth beauty and changes the environment around you. That joy then flows first by being happy in recognising Gods beautiful works towards each other. Rather than looking for more like a consumer, there is a contentment in what God has given us that keeps us pressing for more of him.
Listening for sounds – sounds of promises that they are kept in your ear in your consciousness it seems not far from your audible senses.
Living in beautiful things, happiness and joy from your realisation while keeping the ear filled with Gods word to you.
How to cultivate this life? What a contribution we would make living this way to life’s onward and upward goal.
Attitude/disposition – Inner person – and gave thanks as a way of life.
Saw – and was happy.
Listened – held promises in my ear, keep before my mind, eye, heart.
Three lines to change your life:
1 What a beautiful thing, God
2 You made me so happy, God, I saw your
3 My ears are filled with the sounds of promise:
Beauty is when I see and God fills me with ability of seeing him everywhere, happiness/joy comes when you see him in what he has done, the sounds of promise is Him so my hearing is Him – its all God my Father!
One thought on “Promising Sounds”
Great article Gareth, inspiring and challenging – thank you
When I first ca me to South Africa in 1979 a famous song doing the rounds was, ‘I hear the sound of rustling in the leaves of the trees, the spirit of the Lord has come down on the earth………….’ Lord may we experience in this day what the apostles experienced in theirs – Acts 2: 2 ‘………….and suddenly there was a sound from heaven’!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!