The Sound of Sheer Silence

Text: 1 Kings 19:9-18

Reflection and Question: Elijah has just spectacularly, single-handedly, defeated the prophets of Baal on Mt. Carmel. In response to his simple prayer fire fell, consuming everything including the water in the trench. Now, because Elijah has killed the prophets of Baal, Jezebel has sworn to kill him. We find him here, fleeing for his life to Mt. Horeb, where God is not in the earthquake or the wind or the fire, but rather comes in the still, small voice, “a sound of sheer silence.” And God then lays out how, by human means, Israel will triumph over the power of Baal. How does God speak to you?

Prayer:Breathe through the pulses of desire Thy coolness and Thy balm;
Let sense be dumb, let flesh retire; Speak through the earthquake, wind, and fire,
O still small voice of calm! Amen.
(Dear Lord and Father of Mankind, John Greenleaf Whittier, The Hymnal, 302)

This meditation is based on the Daily Lectionary Year 2 from the Book of Common Worship for the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) (1993).