What the Silence Revealed

lunchThe silence around the dining room table was ear splitting. Somebody please say something, my mind shouted.

We were having lunch with a dear friend. A friend that admittedly did not have the best of hearing. We had tried raising our volume level to Extreme, hollering out various family adventures and anecdotes. Some brought a response. Most did not.

About halfway through the meal I realized my own discomfort with the stillness. My mind was squirmy and anxious. Rather ironic really. For so many times as a mom I had declared my need for a solitary moment, quiet and peace, and if it didn’t arrive pronto, the frazzled mama would turn into the Wicked Witch of Southwest Alaska. But here I was, showered with silence, fighting to fill the lack of conversation.

The longer I pondered my own communication itchiness, the more it bothered me that this vocal void had the power to annoy me so.

I watched my children sitting across the table from me. They were being so kind and well-behaved. Thank You, Jesus!  I then glanced at our elderly host. He clearly was thrilled to have us there judging by his emotional prayer at the beginning of our meal. Then I looked at my own fidgety heart. Soak in this moment, I ordered it, before the moment is gone. (Sometimes I have to boss my heart around before it can see the right-in-front-of-my-nose obvious.)

Emily P. Freeman talks about this very thing in her brand new book, Simply Tuesday:

Driving toward the mountains, standing on the beach, sitting beneath the sky on a moonless night – I feel small, but I like it this way. It’s comforting, like I’m not in control and I wouldn’t want to be. In these places, I’m small enough to breathe in deeply, small enough to see what’s happening, and small enough to let go, to be loved, to remember the with-ness of Christ. This kind of small carries wonder, gratitude, and peace. This kind of small leads to worship.

To worship in the midst of this moment. Yes! That’s what I wanted. That’s what my soul needed. To soak it in and marinate in it fully.

So I gave in and settled in to the silence. Breathing it in. Refraining from the push and pull of my fast-forward get-‘er-done nature.

And there in that small ordinary moment I saw the Spirit at work. In my children. In my host. In me! And I found myself noticing the details. The smells. The taste. The richness of the memory and the value of the here and now.

sandDo you ever find yourself missing those priceless small moments because you’re too busy trying to keep up? Honestly, I don’t think our souls were meant for such chaos. We weren’t wired for the crazy restless 24/7 rush.

Our prayer is that you will find time to pause today and hold on to the precious. The sacred. The ordinary. And as you do, we pray that you will see the fingerprints of God. For His heart is revealed in so many ways and in so many places. If we only have eyes to see it. In the sticky. In the mess. In the beautiful.


{To find out more about small-moment living in a fast-moving world, CLICK HERE. Official launch date for Simply Tuesday is August 18th, 2015. You can also see four short videos on the Simply Tuesday concept to wet your appetite while you wait for your book to arrive in the mail. Or feel free to buy it from your favorite local Christian bookseller when it launches. Your soul will thank you. We promise.}

Celebrate your smallness


Anne-Renee Gumley

Anne-Renee is a full-time mom who works part-time at her family's party store. She has two children who keep her laughing, a husband who keeps her smiling, and an itch for writing that just won't go away.

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About Anne-Renee Gumley

Anne-Renee is a full-time mom who works part-time at her family's party store. She has two children who keep her laughing, a husband who keeps her smiling, and an itch for writing that just won't go away.


  1. Hi Anne-Renee,

    Oh sister, I cannot believe how much I identified with this post. I think there are those small moments that I too end up missing out on myself. Moments that get caught in the 24/7 rush or rat race. I too try to fill up awkward times of silence by talking about anything and everything. Thank you for reminding me to take pleasure in the ordinary things.
    In Christ,

    • Thanks for this, Bethany! Feels like I miss so many things — mainly because I get too busy and rush right past them. Like my frazzled state doesn’t allow me to see things fully. Emily P. Freeman’s book, Simply Tuesday, has been an amazing reminder to focus on the small and the ordinary, and in those moments, to see Christ. I highly recommend it! (It comes out tomorrow! Whoop whoop!)

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