Women of Christmas ~ Keeping Silence

Nine whole months or 270 days (give or take a few) of not speaking a word or of not being able to hear the sounds of life bustling about. That is a long time to be quiet, a long silence. {We are in Luke 1:19-25 today, Chapter 2 of Women of Christmas by Liz Curtis Higgs. Here was Chapter 1}

My man, bless his heart, cannot keep quiet about a surprise to save his soul. Many a Christmas gift has been given early because he just could not contain the excitement. It has caught me off guard a handful of times but we’ve learned and now try to shop as close to Christmas as possible. I have to confess though, it is absolutely one of the things I adore about him. I also love talking through life with him. He is my best friend. Dark nights are spent sharing fears and dreams, long dreadful days are places to exchange words of love and support, joyful moments aren’t fully celebrated until we can rejoice and praise God together. I can only going through an entire pregnancy without being able to talk with him; let alone a pregnancy that had been prayed for – hoped for – longed for – for decades, without the sound of his voice.

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Elizabeth and Zechariah knew the struggle, the agonizing nights of prayer and the endless months and months of waiting. I bet Zechariah’s heart ached for his wife every morning as she walked to the well where he knew all the women would be chatting about her failure to produce. I wonder if he ever had to defend her honor amongst his friends who all had sons. The silent tears shed that he witnessed her brush away with each new cycle must have tortured him. They knew this struggle, they were in it together.

And now they couldn’t talk about it and they’d just been given the biggest faith boost of their married life.

And then the miracle happens, she gets pregnant! I wonder what that conversation looked like, the gestures she used between the tears streaming down her face. I wonder how Zechariah encouraged her through all the morning sickness. I wonder if she counted every day with tenuous caution. I wonder if she noted every symptom. The Bible never says that Elizabeth doubted, but I wonder if she hesitated in bursting down her best girlfriend’s door, just in case “this wasn’t it.” After all, she didn’t have Pregnancy Test Kits or an OBGYN to run to for an ultrasound.

She didn’t have to keep silent. The Lord only closed Zechariah’s ears and mouth. But she chose to hold their faith seed silently in her heart away from everyone for half of her pregnancy. Five months bears witness to a season change, maybe even a holiday or two. There had to have been knocks on the door, friends trying to make contact and send messages. Perhaps neighbors tried bringing meals over. Yet she shored up her heart and tucked it inside in silence.

Silence is a holy place. With each growing symptom and each passing day with life still in her belly she was able to simply glorify the faithfulness of God.

“Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10

In those quiet moments Elizabeth was able to let faith take deeper root. In those weeks of solitude and stillness she could sit and revel in His holy presence. There was no room for doubters, fear talkers or naysayers. The frenzied talk of others wouldn’t have opportunity to break her. There was no substance to feed the thoughts and feelings of fear and doubt. When the only one in her space was the presence of God, she could only strengthen her belief in his faithfulness. In those quiet days and nights there was room for God to whisper about this babe to his momma’s heart. She began to know more intimately the character of the God who sees broken hearts, the God who redeems long-awaited dreams.

In that space between the spoken promise and the fruit of promise is the silence, the waiting of faith.

What promise has God revealed to you? What dream is secretly growing in your soul? What hope are you anticipating to break through in your life? Perhaps keeping silent will protect it from the harsh exposure of others’ doubts and fears. Let it sit safely in the deep places of your heart where God can breathe life over it. There is safe keeping in the silence. And when it’s revealed for all to see, it will radiate His glory.

“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: … a time to be silent and a time to speak.” Ecclesiastes 3:1,6

“The end of a matter is better than its beginning.” Ecclesiastes 7:8

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Linking up today with Meredith Bernard for Women to Women Wednesdays, and Holley Gerth for Coffee for Your Heart.

 

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4 Comments on “Women of Christmas ~ Keeping Silence

  1. I am a firm believer that we cannot share everything with everyone at anytime. Some things the Lord has spoken to or shone us that must be kept secret or we must keep silent about. Naysayers can knock our dreams or the visions He give us.

    Like

    • Misty,
      You are absolutely right! I have had to learn the hard way about naysayers. But God is so faithful to never leave us nor forsake us – even in the wake of a shredded dream, vision or hope. I’m glad you came by today!

      Like

  2. Pingback: Breath of Heaven ~Chapter 3 | Faith 2 Shine

  3. Zechariah could not speak for 9 months! I talk a lot and Mt 12:36 says that we will have to give an account of every useless word we have ever spoken. Yikes! Love, G.G.

    Liked by 1 person

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