Psalm 46:10 Be Still and Know that I Am God
Imagine your life is a blank piece of paper. Now think of the things that make up or fill up your life right now. Write or draw the things that take up your time and energy in size proportion to how much time you spend doing them. If you spend most of your time working, then the word “work” (or a picture for it) would be the largest thing on your paper. Then fill in the other things you spend your days doing. When you are finished your picture might look something like this:
What do I notice? Not very much whitespace. What do I know? I need to create opportunities for whitespace in my life. What is the danger for me? Being full of resolve to clear some whitespace in my life, and before I know it, I have filled the vacancy with some other activity! Glynn Young wrote in his community blog, “The whitespace in our lives is like that. We have it, but we usually try to fill it up with activities and stuff. Yet that whitespace is the rest time, the thinking time, the quiet time that we need to let ourselves be quiet. It’s the time when God speaks most clearly, or when we’ve pushed away all the distractions that invade our lives so that we can hear God speaking clearly.” I know that I have to be very intentional about carving out time to be still. What are some strategies you use? My pastor says she intentionally builds extra time into her day, between appointments, so that after arriving at her destination, she can turn off the car, breathe, and have time to be still. One friend uses her car time to pray on the way, chatting with God like an old friend in the passenger seat. Another friend takes a little extra time in…*gasp* the bathroom stall at work for a few moments of stillness. While I sometimes wish I could wipe my paper clean of many of the activities that take up my waking hours, the reality is that we do have these activities to juggle as a family and they do bring me great joy.
Let me be honest. Being still is not my strong suit. In fact, it takes a great deal of effort for me to be still. But God is exceedingly patient with me. When I take the time to be still and listen for God I am always amazed at what God has to say. I believe that God had Ryan in mind for me as a life partner. This laid-back Caribbean man will call me over to him in the evenings and say, "Honey, you haven’t stopped since you came home. Come sit down with me and relax." The truth is, I don’t even realize I am still going at such a high speed until he mentions it. He doesn't have any trouble taking time to chill out. More often, I need to follow his example in the relaxing department!
· How do you carve out time to be still?
· Think of a time when God surprised you during your quiet time
· What other ways do you hear God speaking in your life?
· What do you gain after a time of being still? Does this motivate you?
· What other scriptures come to mind when thinking of being still?