The American holiday season sometimes feels like it zooms right by us, and before we know it we are caught up in whatever it is that we get caught up in. In studying Psalm 100, the LORD gave me this thought-provoking question: “What kind of noise is your life making?”
“Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands.” Psalm 100:1
We so often relate noise to audible things…but today, I’d like us to ponder the inaudible. So much of who God designed us to be as women is actually about the inaudible…the things we do that no one “hears” unless we do it wrong or, worse, neglect it completely. If I learned anything last year, it would be this: that my role as a woman is so much about what people don’t “hear” — that only my Creator “hears” — and that I am to be completely ok with that.
If there is a joyful noise indicated, that begs to say there is also the opposite possible… like clamorous in Proverbs 9:13. The dictionary deﬁnes it as “marked by confused din our outcry; noisily insistent”. I did NOT say glamorous, haha, although, isn’t it interesting that those two words rhyme! Today’s woman seems determined to be anything but meek and quiet – yet, God says that this is the kind of noise He is looking for.
We’re making too much of the wrong kind of noise! Why do we skip our devotions on the very days we need them most? On Thanksgiving, or Christmas, or any other event this time of year that we are hosting…we ﬁnd ourselves willing to neglect our time with God, but not our makeup or hair routine. How sad.
How is the music of your spirit doing? Reading on in Psalm 100, we note that it says “enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise…”. Does your presence bring a spirit of praise or a spirit of “stay away from me”? I think sometimes with commands like these, we shrug them oﬀ and don’t take them seriously. How is the spirit of your home doing? We don’t sing enough in today’s homes. Is the only singing you do when you’re jamming out to your favorite movie theme songs? Pastor Art Kohl taught me years ago that singing is a sign of spirituality. If you’re not willing to sing, that’s a huge sign of your inward condition! Do you sing?
How is the music of your inﬂuence sounding? Are you a classy Christian or a complaining Christian? A gracious woman retaineth honor…are you retaining the honor God bestowed within you? The little eyes watching us know how we feel about our Christian life. Even if we never voice it, they “hear” the noise of our life on a daily basis…and it is aﬀecting them.
What about the noise of the inﬂuence you are allowing to aﬀect you – are you aware of it? We need to cut out the noise in our own lives that is inﬂuencing us in a wrong way. The phone is a big one…there’s no arguing that it easily consumes our days. Things
on our calendar is another. How crammed a day can get…and how normal this has become! Along the same line is the noise of that feeling of obligation. This season is huge for that – cook this, bake those cookies, buy these people presents, attend this family gathering, get a family photo with these people, and on and on it goes. Somehow, American culture has convinced us that we have to keep up with the noise. Especially this time of year…how noisy does your life feel?
Choose to be diﬀerent! The noise of our society causes us to cave: we must do this, post pictures or it didn’t happen!, must coordinate outﬁts on holidays, etc…yet, we still choose to cave. No one makes us do those things – we choose to. God says in 1 Corinthians 10:23 “All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not.” Are you choosing that which is expedient towards edifying? Choose God’s way! Living out God’s Word (“make a joyful noise”) is validating! Yet – why do we seek to validate our lives otherwise?
These things we need to work on – most of them are things people won’t “hear”. They won’t “hear” us taking time to better our cooking skills so our family has regular meals; getting up 20 minutes earlier to talk to Jesus; cleaning the bathroom so it can be dirtied again; crying tears to the Holy Spirit over a troublesome burden; exercising meekness when someone crosses us; accepting and integrating the help of those around us. Whatever your joyful noise is that you need to work on – remember that God “hears” it…and that is really the only One Who matters. The middle verse of our passage is perhaps the clincher of why we choose the wrong noise – we forget Whose we are: “… we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.” The last verse reminds us why we are His! “For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.”