On Staying Quiet
Have you ever felt like you are choking on all the words you cannot say? I find myself feeling just that way today. An internal war between fighting for what is just and true and right and being quiet, still, and merciful in the face of mistreatment. I gotta say I don’t know how Jesus did it.
Real talk here. I wobble between straight-up awe and downright annoyance at how He faces his accusers and remains silent.
Maybe I am annoyed by Jesus’s silence because I’m competitive by nature, and I want everyone to know right now that He was and is who He always said He was. The win at all costs mentality. Maybe it’s because I am, like many, adverse to suffering, and if He had just used His words to Pilate, then maybe He could have avoided that whole cross situation.
Unfortunately, I don’t think those are the catalysts for my irritation.
I think it’s because I am held to the same standard, and I really, really don’t wanna be. I am His. His disciple. The temple of His Spirit. I am called to walk like He walked and talk or, in this case, not talk like He didn’t talk. I think I just made that more confusing, but the point remains that He faced it all and worse for us. I wish the Bible could give me some inner monologue sometimes. Like one or two Jesus thought bubbles. I know it must have been difficult for Him to remain calm and hold back. Wanting to speak on His behalf but yielding to the Father. It gives me some comfort to think that on the inside maybe He felt as frustrated as I do right now. Probably more so considering He is perfect and I am not.
Life this side of heaven is just so messy and awful sometimes. People are cruel, and life isn’t fair. I am holding on to God’s promises today like Tom Cruise on the edge of a cliff Mission Impossible style. By a thread. By my pinkies. My flesh wants to throw people under metaphorical buses and put people on metaphorical blast, but my spirit knows I should follow His example.
Because He had a plan and still does. He saw the end game, and if being quiet meant saving you and me, then it was worth it to Him. I am reminding myself today that if glory can come from the cross then certainly He can bring glory through our suffering as well.
He is well acquainted with it, and He has a pretty solid track record of overcoming it.
I don’t know how these earthly circumstances will shake out. I am not guaranteed justice here, and, today in the thick of it, I’m angry. Mostly at the people responsible, but honestly, I’m also angry at God a little too. Because I am tired, and I wonder, “When is it enough?” Enough suffering. Enough waiting. Enough silence when all I want to do is be heard.
That’s okay, friends. He can handle it…all of it…the bad and the ugly. He knows my heart despite my current emotions. He sees me like I see one of my babies in a meltdown. He stays silent while I rage. His presence is calm and reassuring. He doesn’t leave me or clap back at me with His truth or His justice.
He waits nearby until I wear myself out, and then He scoops me up and gently collects my tears.
See, silence can hurt, but it can also heal and soothe and comfort. His silence saved us, sacrificing more than just dignity answering the question “when is it enough” once and for all. Now in my pain. On the cross. Last week. In twenty, thirty, forty hard years. Always. All of the above. He is enough. That’s my only answer. The only words I’ll speak in the face of suffering now.