I would like to start this post off with some lyrics from a very powerful worship song. This song is what prompted me to dive deeper into finding out more about what it means to be still and why the Lord calls us to do so. “Be Still” by Bethel Worship.
“Be still my heart and know ~ You are God alone ~ Stop thinking so much ~ And just let go. ~ Be still my soul and rest ~ Humbly I confess ~ in my weakness ~ your strength is perfect. ~ For you alone are God. ~ There will be no other ~ and You have won my heart ~ more than any other ~ so I will give it all ~ ‘Cause You gave it all for me!” ~
These lyrics are such a heartfelt representation of stillness. Letting go of the things our hearts hold on to, obsess over, and allow to get in the way of what God is trying to do in our lives. Being still has always been something I have seen as interesting. Almost like being still seemed wasteful to me. The world we live in is continually changing and constantly moving, but it is the stillness of our hearts that God desires. After many hours of looking throughout the Word, I came across the passage in Mark that talks about how Jesus calmed the storm and sea when the disciples were out in the boat with Him. He calmed the storm by simply uttering the command “Quiet! Be still!” (Mark 4:39). If the winds and the waves, the terrible thunder, lightning, and pouring rain can obey His commands, we certainly can do the same.
A way that the Lord has helped me to look at this is by the image of a butterfly. These beautiful, marvelous creatures don’t start out very lovely. They start as just a caterpillar; slow and sluggish, not very appealing. They eat there way through the beginning stages of there life. After a while, they begin to form a cocoon, and if any of you have seen this, the beginning of this process can look kind of scary. The caterpillar squirms and moves around and looks to be very uncomfortable, and it begins to look like if they move around much more, they will fall off the branch or twig they are attached to and will meet their end. After it finally calms down, the cocoon begins to harden and form a protective surrounding for the caterpillar to find shelter in as it grows into a butterfly. This transformation is incredible, when you see the cocoon begin to slowly leave the newly formed butterfly, and its wings shine brightly with all its colors and brilliance.
This is similar to how we are. We find ourselves going through life, without any worries, sort of just going through the motions and we become very stagnant in our walk with the Lord. There is no growth or there is an area in our life that needs improvement and we just push it aside until later because we don’t want to deal with it. When the Lord wants to see us grow, He places things in our lives that are meant to strengthen us and transform us into a new creation through Him. Trials, difficulties and struggles are very uncomfortable. They are frightening and can cause us to panic, squirming around and trying to find something to do to save ourselves from pain. But it is when we calm ourselves, allow our hearts to be still, we find that the Lord gives us peace. We begin to breathe again and then find that through the trials, God remains faithful, and our stillness allows for His divine will and plan for our lives to be known to us. “But He said to me ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” 2 Corinthians 12:9. Through our weakness He is strong, and through Him, we find our strength. We become a new creation; stronger than before, more beautiful than we ever have been. We are revived! I love the fact that once we quiet our hearts, it allows us to get out of our own way of growth, and we can finally hear the voice of the Lord. He fights for us; He wants to see us become stronger in Him and become a more beautiful creation through the Lord. Let’s look at what scripture says about stillness.
- Exodus 14:14 ~ “The Lord will fight for you; you need only be still.”
- 1 Samuel 12:16 ~ “Now then, stand still and see this great thing the Lord is about to do before your eyes!”
- Psalms 37:7 ~ “Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for Him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes.”
- Psalms 46:10 ~ “He says, ‘Be still and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”
- Psalms 62:5-8 ~ “Yes, my soul, finds rest in God; my hope comes from Him. Truly He is my rock and my salvation; He is my fortress, I will not be shaken. My salvation and my honor depend on God; He is my mighty rock, my refuge. Trust in Him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts to Him, for God is our refuge.”
- Isaiah 26:3 ~ “You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast because they trust in you.”
- Isaiah 40:31 ~ “But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”
- Zechariah 2:13 ~ “Be still before the Lord, all mankind, because he has roused himself from his holy dwelling.”
- Philippians 4:7 ~ “And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Sometimes it can feel like our lives, our very beings, have become a wild storm. We can become tossed back and forth and become discouraged as we are being drowned by the lies the enemy and the world throws at us. But by His might, by His holiness, we can do all things, and that includes finding ourselves in a place of stillness. He calmed the sea as it tossed the boat back and forth, and He can most certainly calm the storm within us; within our lives. Pray. Become still. Listen and focus on the Lord. Instead of rushing into things or trying to fight our way out of situations, calm your spirit and allow the voice of the Lord to intercede in your life. There is nothing that we can do to save ourselves from the storm. We ought to come before the Lord humbly, and acknowledge our need for a Savior. By our willingness to allow Him to take hold of the helm of our hearts and by His unfailing, sustaining, and awe-inspiring love, we will find peace in the stillness.
Be still tonight as you lay in bed or when you wake up in the morning and are getting ready to start your day. Give Him the undivided and full attention of your heart and go before Him in prayer, calming your spirit before the Lord. This is something I have to remind myself of often, and I pray that the Lord uses these words to encourage you as much as it did for me and that it pulls you back to whatever it is He is doing in your life right now. Be still, brothers and sisters, and know that He is mighty and He loves you! “The Lord will fight for you, you need only be still.” Exodus 14:14.