We are approaching a holiday weekend, and the island throngs with visitors. At one of the nearby rental houses, a very loud party took place, music throbbing, voices shouting rather than talking, and occasionally an obscenity or curse cutting the air. Even with all the windows closed, the deep bass sounds of music penetrated our house, reverberating in the afternoon’s quiet. I assume someone must have summoned the police, because two patrol cars eventually arrived and the mood shifted. So much noise! Noise that drown out conversations, noise that displaces the sounds of nature, noise that offends neighbors. Do I have too much noise in my life? Do I stay busy so I won’t have to listen to my inner voices? Do I shut out the needs of others with activity and projects, hoping to avoid responsibility and involvement? Does God sometimes come into my life and remind me that I need to reshuffle my priorities. Forgive me, lord , when I try to use noise to keep you from being close. Help me invite you into the stillness of my heart. Amen.