WHAT DOES IT MEAN to be still?
The answer to that, I suppose, can be far-ranging depending on context. Ask a child to be still and you likely want them to sit quietly. Waiting.
Ask an adult to be still and you likely want them to listen.
Waiting and listening. Both are important in relationships, in communicating, in understanding.
Now take those two words and consider them from a faith perspective. Be still and know that I am God. That scripture, Psalm 46:10, has once again—thrice in the past several days—popped right before my eyes. And I mean that in the literal sense although “popped” may be a bit of a stretch. While reading the book, Red Letter Challenge, for a Lenten series focus at my church, that bible verse showed up on page 19 in the introduction.
Only two days prior I found Psalm 46:10 penned in my handwriting on an envelope buried in a drawer I haven’t looked in for months.
And then, yesterday, I found a bookmark inside Troubled Minds—Mental Illness and the Church’s Mission by Amy Simpson (a book I’d highly recommend) and gifted to me by a dear friend. She’d tucked the bookmark, with the verse, Be still and know that I am God, inside. I read the book months ago. But a recent sermon on the stigmas of mental illness by the pastor at my friend’s church, Emmaus in Northfield, prompted me to pull the Simpson book from the shelf. And then rediscover the be still bookmark. I’d highly recommend you listen to this sermon series about the “no casserole disease.”
But back to Psalm 46:10. I’ve written here previously about that scripture first emphasized to me by my friend Steve. And then soon thereafter, during an especially challenging period in my family’s life, the bible verse just kept showing up. In hymns, devotionals, on a child’s drawing, on a print in the public restroom of my mom’s care center, on a handcrafted paper angel…
Some might call this coincidence. I don’t. As a woman of faith, I believe these words were meant to be imprinted upon my heart. Psalm 46:10 reminds me that even in the midst of chaos, God is here, with me, carrying me through difficult days, encouraging me to be calm, to be still, to understand that I am not alone.
Nor are you alone. As human beings, we all hold the capacity to be there for one another. To sit quietly. To listen. And then, when we can, offer compassion, support, hope and encouragement. To bring the hotdish when no one else does. To love and embrace. To be there.
© Copyright 2020 Audrey Kletscher Helbling
Being still is not always easy to do but vital for our well being. Sounds as if you have a good handle on it.
You’re right. Being still isn’t always easy. The gratitude journal you gifted to me has also helped a lot in focusing on the positive, the blessings, the many reasons I have to feel grateful. Thank you for that, my friend. You are a blessing to me.
I don’t believe in coincidences. There are messages everywhere we go, all throughout the day and all through our lives. We just need to open our eyes and expect the Creator is showing us the way. Being still is the best way I’ve found to connect with nature and calm myself and let go of daily stress.
I love that photograph! Everything about that image is calming.
You “get it,” Lori. I’ve always appreciated your thoughtful comments, your way with words, your contentment, the peace that seems so much a part of you. You are right. The Creator is showing us the way. No coincidence.
This is exactly what I needed today. To be still in God’s presence. And I agree and feel that God brings forth things for us and reminder. A true blessing! Thank you
Kiandra, it’s good to hear from you. Praise God that I could bless you today with this post.
Amen Audrey, and thank you Lord for your faithfulness.
Yes, thank you.
Psalm 46:10 is a good verse to be reminded of, often. I love that God is reminding you in many different ways, no coincident!
I love the photo of the tree! God is definitely in that too.
Isn’t it amazing how He works?