"Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.” Ps. 46:10
This is a very simple truth, yet it is so easy to forget. I know I need to be reminded of it constantly. Without much thought we can get caught in the world’s current of rushing here and there without so much as time for thought and reflection on God. It is so hard to be quiet and inactive.
Silence itself is often avoided at all costs. Even at home “relaxing” we must have the TV on, or the radio, or the CD player, or the tape recorder, or...anything just as long as we don’t have silence. The things we listen to may be good, encouraging, and building. There is a time for that, but there is also a time to be still before God.
If you think silence is easy, try it. Pick a time when you are alone. Turn everything off. As much as your environment allows eliminate all sound. Then sit in a comfortable chair and just think about God. Don’t pray or speak out loud. Just sit, be still and mediate. How long is it before your mind wanders? How long before you are bored? 10 minutes...5 minutes...2 minutes...???
Even our “quiet” times are often filled with activity such as prayer and Bible Reading. Of course, prayer and Bible Reading are vital to a successful, healthy Christian life. But so is a time of silent mediation. Silence is often what we neglect and yet that is often when we can learn to know God. We develop a deeper sense of relationship as God makes His Truth alive to us in times of stillness.
As we make time daily to be silent before God, we will find our minds and spirits becoming more calm. It is so easy to get in a rush or a panic and end up being driven by circumstances and fears. When stillness becomes a habit, then when panic or fear raises it’s ugly head we will be better able to handle it. We will not be swept away in negative emotions or circumstances, but will be able to draw on the peace and strength of God.
If you have never specially practiced stillness before, now is a good time to start. Examine your schedule and make time - ideally daily but at least weekly. Start small with a few minutes and then work your way to a time that is good for you. Keep your mind centered on God. Consider Who He is and what He has done. Learn to discipline your mind so that it doesn’t wander. If it does wander bring it back as soon as you realize what has happened. It becomes easier with practice. Some will find it harder than others. But don’t give up. Your relationship with God is worth perseverance.
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