Learning to be still

We spoke it last night and then again this morning as I sat with four precious Christ-sisters digging into what Matthew had to say about Jesus.  It is the challenge of being still.  Jesus had that quality about Him.  He was never intimidated by Pharisaical questions or attitudes.  He was never deterred from his course.  He was never flustered in the middle of the unexpected.  His was not a reactive lifestyle but a purposeful mode of living.

In a chaotic world, how do we learn to live like that?  How do we still ourselves?

I am typically not a still person until lights are out and my head finally rests on the pillow.  I am moving and shaking most all day.  Let me clarify that I am not necessarily being productive in all that moving around.  Sometimes I’m just here and there, flitting from one small project to another, cleaning up one mess then another.  And if my body is not moving about then you can be sure my mind is going 65 miles an hour.

I wonder if I know how to be still.

I learned to do things.  Pick up my toys.  Put away my books.  Clean my room.  Iron my clothes. I was taught to work hard, finish the project, study to get good grades.

Who taught me to be still?

Growing up I was taught and observed Christian disciplines.  When I visited my aunt and uncle’s house, I saw my Grandpa Lockard in his bedroom sitting in a comfy chair reading his Bible.  My mother gave me devotional books to help me cultivate a daily connection with God, and my dad was an example of praying every single day no matter what.

I have learned that I need a quiet time with God every day, and I have chosen the mornings.  But how do I practice being still all day long?

As my sisters were preparing to leave this morning after our study, we determined to practice being still. We are on a mission to learn stillness.  It will be quite a challenge as we enter what is for most of us the very busiest time of the year. The Thanksgiving-Christmas Rush starts like a slow-moving locomotive around October then picks up speed and barrels down the track at breakneck speed and nobody better get in the way. Because this train’s moving!

Wouldn’t it be different to spend the next few weeks with patches of stillness thrown into our days? Wouldn’t it be peaceful?  Wouldn’t it change things?  Wouldn’t it change me?

I am determined to learn how to be still before the Lord, to know even more than I do now that He is God, that He is in control, that He has a plan for my life and for those I love, that He will redeem the ugly and make it beautiful, that He does hear prayer, that He is more than enough for whatever I need.

“Be still and know that I am God,”   It’s an invitation from the Ancient of Days.  “Come and know me.” What God is like that?  What kind of God made Himself small enough for Mary’s womb?  What kind of God put on skin like me so that I could be transformed into being more like Him?

Yes, what kind of God is this, calling my name, bidding me to come?  This is an invitation I cannot refuse.

Will you join me?

4 thoughts on “Learning to be still

  1. Oh my gosh, Peggy. I just told my Bill today that we both need to slow down. It seems like thus fall has so fast slipped away. I feel so disorganized this blessed season. I know it’s not supposed to be this way. Too much to do & time is slipping away. My heart is so not in tune. My family has been torn apart by divorce & it so hurts my heart. Thanksgiving & Christmas is not the same. Things are changing & all out of whack. I just want to fly away & hide in God’s love. Thank you for reminding me that yes I too need to slow down, be quiet & still. God has something for me if only I’m still to listen. I love you Peggy & are so blessed, encouraged & challenged by your writings from your heart.

    Shirley Vinson.

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