“When You Say Nothing At All” by Allison Kraus and Confederate Railroad
40 Days of Country – Song #17 – Lent 2016
With a career that started at the young age of ten, and a recording contract by the age of fourteen, Allison Kraus has legitimately spent her life making music. Unlike most of the other artists in this list, Kraus’s background was actually in bluegrass music, and by 1987, she had joined the band with whom she still performs today, Confederate Railroad.
Allison Kraus is perhaps best known for her 1995 cover of Keith Williams 1988 hit single, “When You Say Nothing At All.” In fact, Kraus was the second of three different artists, over a a twelve year period who took the song to number one on the charts. The lyrics speak the universal truth that sometimes, especially in relationships, actions can speak louder than words. According to the singer, “The smile on your face,” “truth in your eyes,” and “touch of your hand,” help “say it best when you say nothing at all.” Sometimes words simply aren’t even necessary.
God has a way of speaking to us without saying a word sometimes as well. This was a truth made clear to Elijah when God spoke to the prophet in a “still, small voice.” 1 Kings 19:11-13 reads, “11 The Lord said, “Go out and stand at the mountain before the Lord. The Lord is passing by.” A very strong wind tore through the mountains and broke apart the stones before the Lord. But the Lord wasn’t in the wind. After the wind, there was an earthquake. But the Lord wasn’t in the earthquake. 12 After the earthquake, there was a fire. But the Lord wasn’t in the fire. After the fire, there was a sound. Thin. Quiet. 13 When Elijah heard it, he wrapped his face in his coat. He went out and stood at the cave’s entrance. A voice came to him and said, “Why are you here, Elijah?” Sometimes, God speaks to us without saying anything at all, but by the Holy Spirit alive inside of us, we are given assurance and moved to do God’s will.
God of silence, amidst the cacophony of noises in our life and the hectic busyness of our days, keep our ears open to hear your voice. Help us slow down and rest in an awareness of you so that we don’t miss out on hearing the new revelations you have for us every day. Amen.