For God alone my soul waits in silence; from him comes my salvation. He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be greatly shaken.
This is true of you. Your soul waits in silence for God alone. Your soul has no voice to scream and cheer, no hands to work or build or fight, no feet to chase after love or money. Your soul has no eyes to appreciate beauty or lust after shiny things. Your soul has only one desire, the one it was created for, an intimate relationship with its Maker and Owner.
There is nothing in all creation that will satisfy the desire of your soul but God alone who is your salvation. Your soul waits in silence for the desires of your heart, the thoughts in your mind, and the exertions of your body to join it in surrender to the One True Affection.
The stresses and anxieties of our lives are rooted in the cracks between the one true longing of our soul and the exertions of our minds and bodies in pursuit of other desires. It is the fear of losing these other desires that shake us; they are the shifting sands that leave our lives unsettled and insecure. Your heart may not know it and your wandering eye may not yet see that God alone is your rock, your salvation, your fortress. But your soul knows, and waits in silence for God.
Your soul waits in silence because it cannot satisfy its own desire for God; it waits for God to come meet it. Your soul can do nothing to rub off sin’s tarnish that the holy God could once again rest fully within. Your soul knows that you can only hope for mercy, only be given salvation, and only hope to know God through blood, by grace. Your soul, like David’s, waits in silence for God to complete his redemption work so it can once again know his presence fully.
The author of this psalm, David, lived by grace. He loved God deeply but mixed his worship of God with the ego of a king, the sin of an adulterer, and the ruthlessness of a killer. He knew his sinfulness well and he knew in his striving he was lost. But he knew the hope of his soul – his rock, his salvation, his fortress. His faith in God’s good grace allowed him to stand and not be shaken.
It takes time to sit alone until the clutter of voices and problems dies down low enough that you can hear the whisper of your soul’s longing for the presence of God. It is time well spent. When you spend time there you will meet afresh the joy of grace and the reason for your hope in Jesus.