Everyday it seems I am fighting a war with my children attempting to get them to simply “be still.” And, I have to wonder at times, does God often feel the same way about us?
To be still in today’s culture is tantamount to laziness in many circles, and yet scripture extends it often as the solution. When we can be still, we plant ourselves firmly into a place of trust in the Lord.
Welcome back to our 30 Days of Prayer series! I hope that you have enjoyed and been encouraged by it.
Do you know what it means to be still? If not, then today you and I will get a crash course in the concept from the Word.
30 Days of Prayer: Pray to Be Still
I have had plenty of times in the earliest seasons of my life when I was able to be still. After my father died when I was six years old, I would make these amazing blanket forts that my mom allowed me to keep up for months at a time! I mean, these things covered a whole corner of the dining room.
For me, though, they offered a safe haven: a place where I could be still, cry, pray, write, and think freely.
My forts were an amazing coping skill for my heart at such a tender age. Yet, once I became a mom, suddenly the ability to go hide away to be still did not seem quite as feasible any longer. I mean, the children always came for me, no matter where I tried to hide.
All I wanted was a few minutes to just be still; to think, and process, and feel, and pray, but in the midst of raising little people, I could not figure out how to accomplish the feat.
Wasn’t I made for more than this? Didn’t my life matter, too?
It was somewhere between the cries for mom and the silent tears in those early days that I heard the still, small voice whisper softly to me.
My daughter, I have plans for your life. Trust Me in this season. Be still in your heart, and know that I am God.”
Be still…and know that I am God.
What in the world did that mean?!
Over the last decade plus I have been learning this central spiritual truth of the faith walk, and I can assure you it truly does change everything.
To be still in the Lord IS to trust Him. Trusting Him creates the freedom to be still.
But, there is more to it than that.
Being still is not simply not moving, though that was surely a big part of my childhood experience. As an adult, however, I of course have certain responsibilities that don’t always allow for me to just sit down and not move. The Lord is not advocating for laziness based on one’s right to be still. He does not contradict Himself.
There is ALWAYS a deeper spiritual principle being taught when it seems like the Word is contradicting itself.
God does not encourage a laziness among His people, but rather an internal peace that does not make sense to the world.
But, how do we access this internal peace and the ability to be still?
By feeding the Spirit that is alive within us and keeping it nourished by the food of the Word. Think of it this way, when you and I each got saved, the seed of the Spirit was planted into our hearts. This little seed needs food, nurture, attention, and watering in order to grow into a mighty Tree.
The soil of the seed is the full person (heart, mind, soul, and strength), and it is on us to work to uproot the weeds in the soil so that the seed of the Spirit can prosper and live. Often people throw stones into the soil of the heart; the hardened pieces of the self that come from a painful experience, trauma, abuse, etc.
These little stones can impede the growth of the Spiritual seed, so we must pour in the nourishment of the Word, the Truth, in order to pluck out the stones.
The Truth of the Word IS the Rock that we can lean on and utilize during the most difficult seasons of life, but we must go through the painful process of retraining the self to accept the Word AS Truth, rather than the painful pieces of the self as truth.
For instance, instead of “I am worthless. No one loves me,” we must rebuke that lie that was planted in pain, and begin the uprooting process by pouring the fertilizer of the Truth of the Word into the soil of the mind. “I am not worthless. I am precious in the site of the Lord. I am made for a purpose, and I am fearfully and wonderfully made. My Abba loves me more than anything, and He dotes on me daily as a Good Father.”
The process of uprooting is the process of nourishing the soil of the mind so that the stoney places can be loosened and eventually the stone that was planted can be tossed away forever.
THIS is the process of sanctification. And it is through this process that we become a new creation in Christ.
As we transform the inner man through this process of soil cleansing, we will begin to experience the mystery of God’s peace. This is the peace that allows us to more easily be still, and yet, the practice of being still in Him benefits us every step along the way.
Be still, and know that I am God.” ~ Psalm 46: 10
What is the guidance given along with the encouragement to be still?
Know that I am God.
But, what does that mean?
I means that we, as God’s children, understand the fullness of the character of God and all of the implications of goodness that surround Him. To know that He is God is to intentionally call to attention all the attributes of His character that reveal His constant covering, love, protection of, and provision for His children. Period.
It is to reject any ideas that suggest that God is mean-hearted towards His children, or a puppeteer who just likes to mess with people for fun. Or, that He is lazy, or ready to punish and pounce, etc.
To know that He is God is to embrace and proclaim into the face of life’s storms that I am beloved and protected, and that God WILL fulfill His promises because He is faithful.
THIS is what frees us from the clutches of the enemy. THIS is what provides us with the peace to be still.
And it is in the midst of this proclamation that we are simultaneously rooting ourselves in the Word of Truth, which sustains for an eternity.
Yes, He is just that good…
Sweet sister, I know that life is hard a lot of the time. The enemy slings his arrows effectively. But, we have some amazing and beautiful armor at our disposal if we are willing to learn how to gear up and wear it effectively. The shoring up of our faith begins with the determination to proclaim the Word of God into the storms of life, declaring with the seed of faith that God IS who He says He is.
It’s not always easy, but nothing worth doing ever is.
Abba, I love You. Thank You for loving me and being the safe haven. In You I can plant my feet firmly to be safe in the storms of life. Thank You for being the Rock on which I can simply be still. You bless my life immensely, and settle my heart and mind with Your Word. Help me to remain committed to hiding Your Word in my heart. May the Spirit have plenty of nourishment to grow mighty and strong. In Jesus’ name, amen.
May “the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus,” (Phil. 4: 7).