“Be still, and know that I am God!
I will be honored by every nation.
I will be honored throughout the world.”
The Lord of Heaven’s Armies is here among us;
the God of Israel is our fortress. (NLT)
Imagine a glass jar filled with water but with sand in the bottom. If the jar is shaken, the water is muddied by the surging sand. But let the jar stand for a while and the water once again becomes clear as the sand settles.
Stillness is so hard to sustain. We can so often be rushing around even priding ourselves on how busy we are. We can be burdened with so many things we figure have to be done. We can be overwhelmed by fears of worst-case scenarios. Our minds and hearts are anything but still. And so our hearts and minds can be muddied, unclear.
We have instances in Jesus’ own life when things and people pressed on him but he withdrew in order to pray. Perhaps his way of letting things become clearer, his way of being still. Christians down the ages have gone on retreats or had shorter times of quiet in order to bring some perspective to a sometimes chaotic life situation.
Stillness does not mean inactivity or denial of uncomfortable realities. It simply means we take time to get our bearings, to filter out the static noise around us and focus on the deeper, larger truths. And as our Psalm indicates, those truths are to do with the almighty power of God who is with us. Stillness allows us to discern that truth amongst all the other truths.