March 25, 2014

Be still and know . . .

In today’s reading, Selwyn Hughes says, “When you sit in silence before God and wait for Him to speak to you, then you bring more and more areas of your life under His control, more and more powers are put at your disposal and your being is more and more closely aligned to the being of God.”

Jesus says the same thing . . .

I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit . . . . As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me . . . . Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing . . . . If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples. (John 15:1–8)

The psalmist also says it . . .

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear . . . The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress . . . . “Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!” The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress. Selah (Psalm 46:1–11)

Running through all of these is the principle of relying on Him. That means being still and not anxious, nor busily trying to come up with my own solutions. I might be upset, but even then, I am to be still. “Be angry, and do not sin; ponder in your own hearts on your beds, and be silent . . . Offer right sacrifices, and put your trust in the Lord.” (Psalm 4:4–5)

If someone tells me to calm down, I might say I cannot, but this is only partially true. In myself, there is no stillness, no calm spirit, but in the Lord, I can be quiet and at rest. Because God “rules the raging of the sea” and because He is powerful to still its rising waves (Psalm 89:9), then He also can . . . “make me lie down in green pastures, lead me beside still waters, restore my soul and lead me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.” (Psalm 23:2–3)

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