Be Still and Know God—wait upon Him, for He alone is our ever-present help in our time of trouble…
“The quieter you become the more you can hear.”
— Ram Doss
God…sometimes there is just too much noise! There’s just too much going on around me. I just want to run away and hide!
Do you ever feel like that?
As Americans, we live in a fast-paced, high pressure hectic world, filled with busy schedules and lives that seem to move at lightning speed.
In these times and under these pressures, it is so easy for us to get so caught up in this hectic work-a-day world that we find ourselves taking our great and mighty God for granted, when we don’t take the time to be still and know Him… and to listen to His still small voice.
“But those who wait on the Lord
Shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint.”
God’s Word alone gives us the secret to weather the storms of our life.
TO KNOW HIM IS TO LOVE HIM
The first step in our obtaining this sort of relationship with God is that we have to be born-again.
Do you believe Christ died on the cross for you?
Have you asked Him to forgive you of your sins and come to live in your heart?
Once you do this, you will experience His love, grace, mercy, and peace.
Then you will begin to understand and “know” His ways.
Someone once said that, “It’s impossible to know God and not love Him and it’s equally impossible to love Him and not want to serve Him.”
The first thing we need to do is get in right relationship with God, by being born-again (John 3:7), meaning we receive forgiveness of our sins and are reconciled back into God’s family, through the propitious sacrifice and shed blood of Jesus on Calvary’s Cross.
The Bible tells us that when we become a Christian, “…old things are passed away and behold all things are made new” (2 Cor 5:17).
As Christians, we are a new creation in Christ, and we now recognize that our lives are no longer our own, but that we have been bought with a price.
Paul put it this way,
“I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me” (Gal 2:20).
In order for Christ to be our Savior, He must first be our Lord, and this means we no longer are living for ourselves, but rather we are now disciples (followers) of Christ.
And the Apostle John says in his epistle,
“He who says he abides in Him (Jesus) ought himself also to walk just as He walked” (1 John 2:6).
Being a Christian is not about following a bunch of do’s and don’t, as you would have in a religion; but rather it is about our having a personal relationship with our Creator.
Augustine said, as Christians (having loved God with all of our heart, mind and strength), that we can do as we please.
This in no way means that we have a license to sin, that as long as we love God, we can go ahead and do pretty much anything we want.
This was not what Augustine was saying, rather what he was saying is that if you love God and if you have God’s Holy Spirit dwelling inside of you and are abiding by His Word, then whatever it pleases you to do will be the correct thing to do.
We now have a love relationship with our Abba-Father, that has been made possible through the blood of Christ, and now as Bond Servants of the Most High, after all that Christ has done for us, we would never want to grieve the Holy Spirit.
Religion tries to earn something that the Bible says we cannot earn.
The Bible says, “For by grace (unmerited favor) you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast” (Eph 2:8-9).
This is a love relationship (after having a circumcised heart), and if you truly love God, then it should automatically follow that you will do what is ethically correct, according to God’s will and His Word, as you are now living by faith.
LET THE WORRIES FADE AWAY
Have you ever wondered how some Christians can go through pain and suffering and still have joy?
It’s because they are being still.
As a Christian God teaches us to put all our worries in His hands.
Instead of listening to the noise of your worries, listen to the voice of the Lord.
We are not to let our joy come from our circumstances, because our circumstances can change in an instance.
Our God does not change. Stop worrying about your joy and your happiness and let Him fight for you.
“The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still” (Ex 14:14).
HAVE NO FEAR
The Lord remains the same, today, yesterday and forever, and as Christians, we know He can fight our battles, but we still seem consumed with fear.
Fear of the unknown? Fear of failure? Fear of the future?
Did you know the Devil can use these fears against us? He loves to distract us with our worries and our fears because they can distance us from God.
2 Timothy 1:7
“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”
And in Psalm 46:1-2 it says,
“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea.”
God has proven time and again that He can work within us and through us.
Sometimes He allows trials to come into our lives, so we can learn to depend more upon Him.
Remember, God is always in control. Stop worrying and just be still.
Waiting is hard and sometimes waiting can hurt.
It is in our human nature to want to control every situation.
Sometimes it can feel like God is not answering our prayers or does not seem to understand the urgency of our situation.
But, if we give in to those thoughts we are saying God is not in control or He is not being fair.
Be still because God is worth waiting for.
He is often at work behind the scenes in ways we cannot fathom.
We should be still and discover what God is trying to teach us while we are waiting.
“Wait on the Lord; be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart; wait, I say, on the Lord” (Ps 27:14).
We have to choose to be still and wait on the Lord in our present circumstances, as an act of our will.
This is a scripture that I often refer to,
10 “Who among you fears the Lord?
Who obeys the voice of His Servant?
Who walks in darkness
And has no light?
Let him trust in the name of the Lord
And rely upon his God.
11 Look, all you who kindle a fire,
Who encircle yourselves with sparks:
Walk in the light of your fire and in the sparks you have kindled—
This you shall have from My hand:
You shall lie down in torment.”
When everything around us seems to be going to hell in a handbasket, as is the case of Psalm 46.
David is telling us in the midst of all that chaos and confusion to be still (v. 10).
What Isaiah 50:10-11 is saying, at times like this, when you don’t have a clue what the heck is going on, and you are walking in darkness, to take a time out and be still, in the midst of the confusion, and ask God to illuminate your present situation, by the light of His understanding.
And following the sparks of your limited understanding, means that you will lie down in torment.
Jesus tells us to let not your heart be troubled (John 14:1), and so this is something we do as an act of our will.
We have to learn to face our fears and not run from them.
There is a quote from an old John Wayne movie that I always like, and it says:
“All wars are filled with brave men, who are afraid and would rather be somewhere else.”
We have to choose to discover what God wants us to learn in every storm we face.
Instead of worrying and fretting, we choose to listen to the voice of our Lord, and not the noise of our worries and fears.
And so we choose joy; we choose life; and we choose love.
Wednesday, May 11
by Henri Nouwen
BE STILL AND WAIT
Maybe I have been living much too fast, too restlessly, too feverishly, forgetting to pay attention to what is happening here and now, right under my nose.
Just as a whole world of beauty can be discovered in one flower, so the great grace of God can be tasted in one small moment.
Just as no great travels are necessary to see the beauty of creation, so no great ecstasies are needed to discover the love of God.
But you have to be still and wait so that you can realize that God is not in the earthquake, the storm, or the lightning, but in the gentle breeze with which he touches your back.
Come join the Adventure!