By Doug De Graffenried

My mother was correct!

She told me if I kept listening to that loud music, I would go deaf. It only took another fifty years for my mom’s prediction to come true. Lacking ego about wearing such things and with modern technology, I can hear fine now. Albeit my hearing is digitally aided. I enjoy watching the staff look at me, when I answer a phone call that only I can hear. Or when I’m holding my phone appearing to have a one-sided conversation. The digital technology allows the phone calls to go directly to my hearing aids. I also enjoy all the settings I have. I can turn on white noise in my head. I have settings for restaurants which allows me to hear what is in front of me. I even have a setting called wife. It allows me to hear instructions without asking for a repeat. There for a while I thought I had memory problems, just turns out that I couldn’t hear anything, especially anything said in the female vocal range.

Growing older is not for cowards!

Last week we went out to eat twice. That is a rarity in the life plan. I was looking forward to a quiet meal. In both places, on Thursday and Friday, the restaurant decided to feature live music. My suspicion is they were targeting a younger audience. I will never tell you where I was dining! I will tell you that in both places the musician sucked! I wondered if they paid the house to play there. What were they singing? What was their genre? Was I moved by the music? In both places I was surrounded by large screen televisions showing sports. No other entertainment was necessary. I had table companions for conversation. What the heck restaurant people? Were your receipts up for the evening? If you’re going to do this, listen to the musician before saying, “Yes.”

I’m a grouch and I know it. I will say that in both dining establishments the musician took a long break. It was nice to hear quiet conversations again.

I know the musicians were glad to play in front of an appreciative crowd. I appreciated their break! I know the younger crowd probably loved the music and enjoyed their evening out. I hope it was great for business and I’m sure the owners made a strategic decision to have music in their establishments to enhance the atmosphere. I get it! I still hated it! Moving forward I will return to both places, but this time I’ll ask about the presence of live music and ask to be seated far-far away from the source of the noise, I meant the music.

In the last book of the Bible, the Revelation, we read, “The Lamb opened the seventh seal and there was silence in Heaven for half an hour.” I guess the seraphim went on break. That was a veiled reference to Isaiah 6, in case you are wondering.

How is the noise level in your life? Do you have to keep some form of noise going around you? Have you learned the spiritual discipline of stillness and silence? Does the thought of silence creep you out?

The Psalmist wrote, “For God alone my soul waits in silence; from Him comes my salvation.”

The Psalmist was also correct!