A Prism Splitting Pure Light

Read: Revelation 8:1-5

When the Lamb opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour. (v. 1)

One of the most important parts of any song is the moment right before it starts. The silence before a song is the precious cup into which the song is poured. It is a pregnant pause, an inhalation before the exhalation of music. Like a piece of music, our worship of God begins not with the first word spoken, but with the silence before it. If we speak to God without pausing first, we are just offering ourselves to God. But if we begin with silence, we are opening ourselves up to receive God.

In Revelation 8, before the saints start praying, before the flashes of lightning and rumblings of thunder, there is silence. In the most pyrotechnic book of the Bible, there is a moment of silence. A hush falls over the crowd; all members of creation hold their breath. Even here in the book of Revelation, at the worship service to end all worship services, there is a moment of silence.

Reformed theologian Jean-Jacques von Allmen says that speaking and singing in worship out of the silence is like a prism splitting pure light into a radiant array of colors. Silence in worship is not an empty moment. It is the fullness of God about to burst upon us. Do we have the humility to wait, even for a minute, before we start talking to God?

As you pray, wait in silence before talking to God.

About the Author

Steven Rodriguez lives in Rochester, New York, with his wife and four children.

This entry is part 1 of 15 in the series Worship: From Silence to Song