I wonder, when was the last time you took a few moments to “be still”? When was the last time you spent purposeful down time not sleeping or being bored? I mean just “being still”. I bet many of you who are reading this are thinking, “I’m too busy for that!” “Who on earth has time for that?” We would rather be told to “believe”. We would rather be told how to “behave”. We would rather do something, be anything but being still! We like to accomplish. We like to take charge. We like to get things done. We like to see results.
Be still, and know that I am God… (Psalm 46:10)
We go days, weeks and months without purposely being still. When we are caught in a situation where we must wait we are bored out of our minds. We’re impatient as we wait and become crankier and more irritated the longer that waiting lasts. Some of us have ways of dealing with these times and they often involve either taking a nap or whipping out our smart phone to surf the internet, text, e-mail or something fun or work related to pass the time and feel productive.
Because that’s just it isn’t it? We need to feel productive. Being still doesn’t sound very productive does it? It doesn’t sound like something you could tell your boss you did. It isn’t the sort of thing your Mom would tell you she’s proud of you for doing. Being still isn’t on the “honey-do” list, is it? Being still probably has a hard time making its way onto your vacation itinerary or your day-off schedule. Because “being still” isn’t something you can brag about around the water cooler or in the lunch cafeteria and “proficient at being still” isn’t something that you’re likely to put on your resume.
Yet what is probably best thought of as the “inner life” continues to go neglected. We find that we are not ok with silence and that we require alcohol or drugs to cope with a neglected soul. We go to Church but don’t have time to incorporate what we learned into our lives and so we quickly forget what we heard.
What is it we are to know? That “I am God”. He’s got it. He’s got it all under control. When He is still there is nothing to fret over. When He’s taking care of business we need not hurry to accomplish anything. When He’s got everything under control what can we possibly do?
O God, do not keep silent; be not quiet, O God, be not still. (Psalm 83:1)
We hurry. We are busy. We fret. We go back and forth. We work hard. Yet it is God alone who can accomplish the things we deeply need or want. He understands the whole picture. When He moves we need not do anything but be still and watch Him do His thing.