One reason we would choose to go into the silence is that Jesus habitually sought solitude and silence. At the beginning of his ministry, he spent forty days in the wilderness where even he confronted the dark side of silence. “He was in the wilderness forty days, tempted by Satan” (Mark 1:13). Jesus didn’t let the paradox of silence deter him from its formative necessity in his life before he began his ministry. And such withdrawal seems to be a pattern in his ministry. “In the morning, while it was still very dark, he got up and went out to a deserted place, and there he prayed” (Mark 1:35). Christians throughout the centuries–hermits who lived alone in the desert and spent their days in silence, monks who lived in communities but spent hours each day in silence, mystics who enjoyed being with God in meditation and contemplation–have looked to the practice of Jesus himself. They found in Jesus’ habit of silent communion with God a model for their own.
—L. Roger Owens, What We Need Is Here: Practicing the Heart of Christian Spirituality (Upper Room Books, 2015)
What challenges do you experience when you seek silence? Join the conversation.
Now during those days he went out to the mountain to pray; and he spent the night in prayer to God.
—Luke 6:12 (NRSV)
Prayer for the Week
New every morning is your love, great God of light, and all day long you are working for good in the world. Stir up in us desire to serve you, to live peacefully with our neighbors and all your creation, and to devote each day to your Son, our Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.
—“A Liturgy for Morning Prayer,” Upper Room Worshipbook
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.
Pause and notice God’s comforting presence by reflecting on the joyous songs of Advent. Good News of Great Joy: Advent Reflections on the Songs of Luke offers 24 daily readings that explore the context, content, and spirituality of the four canticles (“little songs”) in Luke 1–2. Learn more.
(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
Reign of Christ
Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.