Have you ever had anyone look at you and say, “be still!” It's more than just “be quiet” and more than just “please keep your mouth shut.” It’s like someone is saying, stop fidgeting, stop worrying, stop wringing your hands, just stop. I suppose a person much younger than myself might say, chill out! Needless to say not everyone is in the “chill out” category of temperaments. Some of us are high strung and bringing it down a notch or two can prove to be an extremely difficult task. That may be the case in this world, but we are not of this world and learning the process of being still is much easier then we all might think.
Let's look together at Psalm 46:10; “be still and know that I am God.” And David says that after telling us in the beginning verses of Psalms 46 that even if the earth is removed, the mountains melt into the deepest sea, and a flood arises with all its destruction, his choice is to be still. How is that even remotely possible? With that list of devastation, my problems pale in comparison. Truthfully though, there have been times when I have felt as if the very earth beneath my feet was being removed. What to do? What to do? The answer is found in Psalms 46:10, not just for David, but for all of us. Amidst all the circumstances we find we are facing, a still, small voice says,” be still.” This gentle command means so much more then be quiet and don't speak. It means to cease striving, stop fighting, and let go. How does that work?
Say perhaps we are called upon to face a situation we never expected- a health issue, a financial problem, a relationship that begins falling apart. These things can cause us to feel as though flood like waves are overtaking us and throwing us off balance. Our natural instinct is to fight for control, to steady the boat. We might give all the outward appearances that we are peacefully trusting the Lord and yet our spirit is striving with God and is anything but peaceful.
We can perhaps fool those around us, but our Heavenly Father- not so much. He loves us so greatly that he wants us to experience genuine peace, not the kind that we all too often manufacture. That is why He challenges us to “be still.” David understood this command so much better than us. He knew that the phrase “be still” meant literally to relax his grip and let go. He also knew that if he failed to obey he would begin trying to do damage control and manipulate the circumstances. In so doing, he would miss the most important part of the situation and that is- deepening his relationship with his Heavenly Father and growing his faith.
The Lord is not taken by surprise by melting mountains, rising flood waters and shifting sands. In fact, He whispers in our hearts that we are exactly where He wants us to be. The outward problems are no problem to Him. What can prove to be the problem though is if we, out of fear, begin to hang on in every possible way trying to make things better-better that is in our way of thinking. The Holy Spirit tells us to loosen our grip and sometimes it's as if He is gently prying our fingers lose one at a time. And although this may hurt, the Lord knows it is the only path to real peace and freedom. All of us must come to that point when we realize that none of our own efforts can bring security or advancement. When our world is seemingly crumbling around us, the call from Scripture is-DO NOT FLINCH IN FAITH IN GOD.
We do not relax our tight grip because of self- made confidence nor because we consider ourselves to be one of the most composed people in the face of disaster. But rather we obey the command to “be still” because of what we know about God. But can’t we all agree that we don’t just want to know about God, we want to know Him. That is exactly what happens, when we relax our grip and let go.
Some might say that our faith is like a leap in the dark and perhaps it may seem that way. But as we let go and leap we KNOW that God, our Heavenly Father, holds us up and holds us close in His everlasting arms of love. So let’s “be still,” and when we do we will know Him in ways we have always longed to and yet never thought possible.