Friday, October 22, 2021

Five Minute Friday - Still

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One word. Five minutes to write about it. This is the idea behind Five Minute Friday and this is today's free-writing post.

still life
still standing
be still

This prompt brought to mind a favorite song by the Eagles, "Learn to Be Still". The lyrics talk about a restless search for meaning and purpose, and references the human willingness to 'follow the wrong gods home' if they promise us what we think we need. It's a sad song, really, because the writer seems to have only a partial understanding of this need to be still. It's more than just stopping the mad rush and slowing down enough to appreciate life. Yes, we will find a certain measure of peace when we stop our frantic activity and lessen the stress and pressure. But the stillness itself only does so much.

In Psalm 37, David acknowledges that there is evil and injustice in the world, and that it's tempting to 'fret' because of that. He also tells us how to avoid that trap:

Trust in the LORD and do good;
dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.
Take delight in the LORD,
and he will give you the desires of your heart.
Commit your way to the LORD;
trust in him and he will do this:
He will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn,
your vindication like the noonday sun.
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.
Refrain from anger and turn from wrath;
do not fret - it leads only to evil.
For those who are evil will be destroyed,
but those who hope in the LORD will inherit the land.
~Psalm 37:3-9~

Another psalmist says this:

He says, "Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth."
The LORD Almighty is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress.
~Psalm 46:10-11~

And an Old Testament prophet proclaims:

"Be still before the LORD, all mankind,
because he has roused himself from his holy dwelling."
~Zechariah 2:13~

Stillness on its own only goes so far. We must be still before the Lord and know he is God. He's in control. He will keep his promises. He will direct us when we are still long enough to listen to what he has to say. 

When we learn to be still, and use the stillness to see and hear what God is doing, that makes a difference. Whether we are to be still and listen to his instructions, or whether we are to be still and not get in his way while he fights for us, being still before the Lord leads to the rest and purpose we long for. When our stillness makes us aware of his presence, we find peace and we respond in worship.

A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, "Teacher, don't you care if we drown?" He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, "Quiet! Be still!" Then the wind died down and it was completely calm.
~Mark 4:37-39

I imagine the disciples themselves got pretty quiet and still watching this happen. They knew only God could command the wind and water. There must have been a holy hush in that boat as these men realized the significance of what they had seen and heard. They were learning to be still. 

Will we learn to be still?


This post is linked at Five Minute Friday for the word prompt "Still".

This post will also be linked at Scripture and a Snapshot hosted by Just A Second and at Inspire Me Monday.

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Annette said...

THIS... I needed to come here today for this " and wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways," to remember to wait patiently and FRET NOT! FMF10

Andrew said...

Pedal to the metal,
driving with a will,
engine screaming like a kettle
and so much for being still.
I envy those who can relax
into the arms of God,
but taking it down to brass tacks
I guess I'm really flawed,
unquiet heart and restless feet,
a bad joke for each peaceful time,
running to thrash metal beat
through a life that just won't rhyme.
I do regret what I've become,
but what the heck, I'm having fun.

Jen said...

Oh my goodness, I love the “holy hush”! I’m going to add that to my vocabulary, stat! FMF27 ❤️

Michele Morin said...

Every instinct in me fights against stillness, and yet I know the spiritual discipline is exactly what my heart needs.

Jerralea said...

I love Psalm 37 so much; I stood upon verse 4 when going through infertility. But today, "do not fret - it leads to evil" jumped out at me!

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