"We are silent at the beginning of the day because God should have the first word and we are silent before going to sleep because the last word also belongs to God.”
Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Life Together
Listed below are Scripture passages that may help you enter into the Grand Silence experience. Read them reflectively.
O LORD, my heart is not lifted up, my eyes are not raised too high;
I do not occupy myself with things too great and too marvelous for me.
But I have calmed and quieted my soul like a weaned child with its mother;
my soul is like a weaned child that is with me.
O Israel, hope in the Lord from this time on and forevermore.
The LORD is good to those who wait for him, to the soul that seeks him.
It is good that one should wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD.
It is good for one to bear the yoke in youth, to sit alone in silence
When the LORD has imposed it, to put one’s mouth to the dust (there may yet be hope),
to give one’s cheek to the smiter, and be filled with insults.
For the LORD will not reject forever. Although he causes grief, he will have compassion
According to the abundance of his steadfast love;
For he does not willingly afflict or grieve anyone.
Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers and sisters, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness. For all of us make many mistakes. Anyone who makes no mistakes in speaking is perfect, able to keep the whole body in check with a bridle. If we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we guide their whole bodies. Or look at ships: though they are so large that it takes strong winds to drive them, yet they are guided by a very small rudder wherever the will of the pilot directs. So also the tongue is a small member, yet it boasts of great exploits.
How great a forest is set ablaze by a small fire! And the tongue is a fire. The tongue is placed among our members as a world of iniquity; it stains the whole body, sets on fire the cycle of nature, and is itself set on fire by hell. For every species of beast and bird, of reptile and sea creature, can be tamed and has been tamed by the human species, but no one can tame the tongue – a restless evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless the Lord and Father, and with it we curse those who are made in the likeness of God. From the same mouth come blessings and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this ought not be so. Does a spring pour forth from the same opening both fresh and brackish water? Can a fig tree, my brothers and sisters, yield olives, or a grapevine figs? No more can salt water yield fresh.
But the LORD is in his holy temple; Let all the earth keep silence before him!
For thus said the LORD God, the Holy One of Israel: In returning and rest you shall be saved; In quietness and in trust shall be your strength.
But you refused and said; ‘No! We will flee upon horses’ – Therefore you shall flee!
And, ‘We will ride upon swift steeds’ –Therefore your pursuers shall be swift!
Cast your burden on the LORD, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved.
Indeed your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But strive first for the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.
1 Peter 5:6-7
Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, so that he may exalt you in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you.