Gayle Crowe has been a part of KNLS, in some capacity, since its beginning. In recent years he has been Vice President of Programming, coordinating the work of all our languages (English, Russian, Chinese, Arabic, English with an African sound, Spanish, and Portuguese). He grew up at the foot of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado, and now lives not far from the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee. He and his wife have two children and two granddaughters.
What are you hearing right now? Oh, I know, you’re listening to KNLS, but I mean besides that. Chances are that there are noises around you as you listen to this broadcast, noises which you weren’t even aware of. If you’re in a house, maybe there is noise of appliances like refrigerators or TVs. If you’re listening to this at work, there are machines, bells, people talking to each other—or maybe yelling at each other trying to be heard over everything else. Outside are the sounds of cars, trucks, sirens, motorcycles, trains, planes. Even if you’re in the country all by yourself you still can hear the quiet sounds of insects and birds and small animals.
Too much noise is a major concern for a lot of people in our world. Here in America, the U.S. National Research Council reports that more than 14 million Americans are thinking of moving because they find their neighborhoods to be too noisy.
Actually, noise is not just irritating. It can be destructive. Too much noise can affect not only hearing, but even emotions, attitudes, and habits. Out in California, on the west coast of the United States, two groups of children were studied: one group lived in a quiet residential area; the other lived under the air corridor of Los Angeles International Airport. The children who lived near the airport did not do as well on tests, they were more likely to become discouraged about projects they were assigned, and they were more prone to depression. And for people on the job, people who work in noisy factories argue more, they change moods more often, they are more worried, and they have headaches more often, than do workers in more quiet situations.
How about . . . silence? “What? That’s the problem! I don’t have any silence!” Neither did Jesus Christ 2000 years ago. He lived long before the industrial revolution, long before automobiles, long before radios and TV’s. But even back then, Jesus found times to get away from the noise and hassle of the city. He would go out by himself just to make time for silence.
Some people are afraid of silence. They say they think bad thoughts. That’s very sad, because there are lots of great things to think about, things that build up, that make us feel good. Ever since I was a kid I’ve enjoyed escaping into my own thought world to think about the beginning. Before time, before space, before matter, what was there? Or more properly, who was there? The Bible says God was there, but what does that mean?