“Certain locals may grow brave wings knowing the silence and the stillness are two different things, one whispers and the other one sings.”

Charles John Quarto


Listening to “Small Towns” by Jim Ratts and Runaway Express; reflecting on ministry, life, and friendships. As I was reading through the lost art of CD jacket design and the always magnificent productions that Salli assembles, I ran across this quote from Charles John Quarto.

While I am certain that those from small towns can truly understand this phrase, I am almost as certain that everyone can. I talk a lot about spending 15 minutes of alone time with God; praying, studying scripture, or just listening. During these times you can discern the difference between silence and stillness. But I wonder if you experience the whisper and singing from the same as others around you?

When you find yourself in the middle of silence, does it whisper to you, or sing? Maybe it’s different depending on the situation. I can only imagine as a parent of a young child and finding that silence during a nap and the song that sings in your heart to hear nothing audible. But then, I am reminded of those who have lost a spouse that has spent the last 50 years side by side. The silence when the services are all over and everyone has gone home must be painful. Is this the whispering that is heard?

And what about those times that we are actually able to just be still? Psalm 46 tells us to “Be still and know that I am God.” There have been multiple times that I was able to be truly still, attuned to all my senses, listening for that still small voice. It was in those times that the voice I heard was not that of a whisper, but one of song. The melody rings in my head, surrounding me, and providing assurance that I was not, and never will be, alone.

What are your reflections? Silence or stillness? Whisper or singing?