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Be still

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Be still

Be still and know that I am God. (Psalm 46:10)

But the clatter of responsibilities and the cacophony of my mind batter at me.

 

Be still and know that I am God.

The minute I stop moving, all the things that are waiting for attention and action and advancement rush in.

 

Be still and know that I am God.

The sensory input is constant. Fans whirring, voices outside, the TV next door, the complaining meow of cats wanting more of something.

 

Be still and know that I am God.

 

And so I'm forced to be honest. I'm not sure I know how to be still anymore. To breathe deeply and simply be in one place, in one frame of mind, in one attitude of silent expectation for the presence of God to surround me.

The Message says it this way: Step out of the traffic! I immediately wonder what I will miss if I step out of the race, out of the flow, out of the going and doing and being. What will I miss if I slow myself down and cultivate stillness and silence?

 

What will I gain?

 

Elijah's story makes it very clear. God was not to be found in the howling of the wind. God was not to be found in the quaking of the earth. God was not to be found in the raging of the fire.

 

God was found in silence, in a whisper, in the space created when wind, cataclysm, and fire were left behind. God is found when we stepped out of the traffic.

 

This is not to say that God is not with us through noisy, hectic, overwhelming, chaotic times. I know I wouldn't survive them if the Spirit didn't accompany me. But the water of life that Jesus offers is meant to be savored and rested in, not gulped down on the way to the next emergency. The bread of life is offered at a feast table, where the pace is easy and no one is rushing to finish and move on. The relationship we're offered through Christ is nurtured in stillness, in silence, in presence that is complete.

What will I gain, if I step out of the traffic and seek the still, small voice of the Holy One?

What will I gain, if I learn how to be still, and know God in the depths of my being?

What will I gain, if I lose the pace of the world, the frantic march of days, the demand to be always available, always on, always immersed in the bumper-to-bumper race?

What will I gain, if I gain the whole world and lose myself?

 

Be still and know that I am God.

 

Be still and know

 

Be still

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