Be still and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.Psalm 46:10
This particular verse from Psalm 46 has always popped up everywhere in my life for the last 10 years. For such a simple command, you might think that obedience and execution would not be a problem for someone like myself who’s been a Christian for 40 years. The challenge I found in this command is “how” to be still. How do I calm my nerves when I am surrounded with a stressful situation? How do I sit still when none of my plans are working? How do I find peace when trouble, conflict, and negative things are staring at my face?
Jesus said, “Be still and know that I am God!”
When I was young, there was one thing in particular that drew me to a religious life – moments of silence. I am a talkative person, but I value more than anything else that moment of reflection, the quiet time where you only hear your heartbeat, the wind, the birds and the tiny gentle voice of God. These moments refresh my mind, invigorate my spirit, and restores my tired body.
But as my life becomes fuller and busier (not to mention that as you grow older, life becomes more complicated), the ability to be still, to be quiet, to reflect, to calm down become a growing challenge. In our modern lifestyle, life is full of action all the time or you’ll be left behind by the fast paced environment around you.
I ask the Lord, How can I be still? He says:
Know. Know me, know that I know you. I am aware of your situation. I feel your pain. I know your thoughts before you even speak a word. I know your strength and your weakness. I know what frustrates you or makes you happy. I know your dreams. I know how much load you can bear. I even know your favourite food.
I know you, I see you and I am always beside you. But do you know that? Do you believe that I care for you? Do you believe that though I am God, I am also your father? Do you trust me that even if your problem seems to be small in the scheme of wider perspective, I care? If your situation is impossible to fix, do you remind yourself of the miracles I have performed? If I have done it before, I can do it again. If I have done it for others, I can do it for you.
When you are afraid, do you take off your focus from your situations and direct it towards me? Peter walked on the water because he looked at me and not on the deep sea below. When your faith is running low, do you trust me that I am working it out? I did it for Joseph. I have foreseen your future. I know all the days of your life. And I have a plan to bring you through victoriously.
When you remind yourself of who I am, your fears will fade, your faith will rise, and then you can be still.
My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord, I would like to end my reflection with this challenge: Will you let go of your safety net and invite uncertainty? Will you jump into an adventure with the Lord and trust God with your life? I can promise you that some rides will not be successful, others will stretch your faith, but to take a ride with God next to you into an unknown future is an experience of a lifetime that will define who you are. Do not be afraid, just sit still, buckle up, and know your God. He will see you to the end and cheer for you when Jesus says to you; “well done my faithful servant.”
This reflection first appeared in the Lamb of God Chronicle Newsletter for July 2023.
Top image credit: photo of a woman sitting quietly in her home while reading from the Bible, from Bigstock.com, © by doidam10, stock photo ID: 331805947. Used with permission.
Mhel Caballes and her husband Tom are members of the Lamb of God, a community of the Sword of the Spirit with seven branches located throughout New Zealand. Mhel and Tom, and their two daughters [including one son-in-law and grand-daughter] live in Wellington, New Zealand.