Of Bicycles and Stillness

Of all of the greasy things I’ve ever had to lay a wrench on, I think my favorite thing to work on might be bicycles. Bicycles may be the most honest machines we use. Nothing is hidden from view by plastic shrouds or tin covers – all of their workings are right there in the open; chain, sprockets, cables and pedals all working as one to propel man and machine down the road.

In my mind, there is something peaceful and right about the entire idea of bicycles, both in their operation and in their maintenance. It’s really a philosophical ideal for me. Bicycles are quiet; quiet to work on – the simple tools required for their upkeep work noiselessly – and nearly silent to ride. And silence is something that seems to be in very short supply these days.

Truthfully, silence makes me a little bit uneasy. As soon as I notice the silence I have to turn on the TV or check my phone for status updates or tweets. But the more I try to make space for silence in my life, the more I realize that God speaks during silence. Instead of shouting, he prefers to wait until we’ve set aside our distractions and are waiting ready to listen. When the Lord met Elijah on Mt. Horeb, he spoke neither in the earthquake nor the wind. He spoke in the stillness.

When you’re at work, be intentional. Be fully engaged and wholehearted in the task at hand. Likewise, when you seek God’s face, make yourself fully available. Carve out some silence away from all of the distractions and noise and listen for a small still voice.

Photo courtesy Jeremy Brooks. Sourced via Flickr Creative Commons

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