The Power of Stillness

The Power of Stillness

“Psalms 46:10” – says, “Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.”

I was in London just recently and as I rubbed shoulder to shoulder with the bustling masses in the underground I could not help but notice the advert for “Google Assistant” and it spoke to me of the incessant rush we are always in.

I started to meditate upon what was being proclaimed in the advert and thought of the well-known Psalm – “Psalm 23” and in light of this meditation let me provide you with a paraphrase of it: –

The clock is my dictator; I shall not rest.

It makes me lie down only when exhausted.

It leads me to deep depression.

It hounds my soul.

It leads me in circles of frenzy for activity’s sake.

Even though I run frantically from task to task,

I will never get it all done,

For my ‘ideal’ is with me.

Deadlines and my need for approval, they drive me.

They demand performance from me, beyond the limits of my schedule.

They anoint my head with migraines.

My in-basket overflows.

Surely fatigue and time pressure shall follow me all the days of my life.

And I will dwell in the bonds of frustration forever.

The life styles that most us have is significantly represented in the – Hamster on a Wheel. We live lives constantly filled with activity. Life is often referred as a “rat race”. What does it achieve? Very little for the most part. Confusion invariably surrounds us in all the activity and action – Perhaps even causing it. There is a sometimes-overwhelming lot of noise that fill our ears, talking heads are everywhere and it seems that everyone has something that they want to get you to be involved in or to believe.

  • The salesman wants to get your attention, so you will buy his products.
  • The politician wants to get your attention to convince you to vote for his agenda.

There is an invasion of never-ending information (most of which is superfluous), noise and confusion that invades our lives every day.

Stillness is something which for this generation in particular is so difficult to handle. If evolution were true (which I do not believe it is) then in the millennia to come ears will have grown into mobiles and eyes will have developed into smart screens – masses are simply glued to devices for connection and distraction.

When things are still, and we are not being distracted by actions our energies simply have nowhere to go. We end up being used to being tired, stressed, and being either pushed or pulled.

When we’re allowed to just be, when we find the power of stillness and not subjected to pushes, pulls, and distractions, we end up discovering God afresh.

Max Lucado writes, “We live in a culture where speed is king. I find myself in a hurry even if there is no reason. We are an uptight generation of compulsive activists. There are ten times more things to do in a day than anyone can do, and so we feel we are always behind and failing to do all that we could. All we do is respond, respond, respond to stimuli. We want peace, but it just does not fit into our agenda. Peace calls for doing nothing sometimes, and we can’t handle that. Pascal the great Christian philosopher and scientist said, ‘Most of man’s troubles come from his inability to be still.’”

Amid all of this God says, “Be still, and know that I am God!” The original Hebrew also means “Let Go” or “Stop Striving”.

When you take time to look at Psalm 46 its interesting to see that the 1st 9 Verses are taken up with images of tumult and at the end it says – “Be still and know that I am God!”

In the midst of our turmoil, rushing and stress and when we find ourselves as a result in waters that are like a raging sea. He can take it and turn them into rivers of blessing. “There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God.” – “Psalm 46:2”

  • A raging sea destroys.
    • A calm river builds.
  • A raging sea brings death.
    • A calm river gives life.

Let’s rememberGod is A Protector – “verses 1-3”

We rest our lives on what we think is secure and live in bubbles of false security: –

  1. We feel safe in our homes – but they can be broken into
  2. We feel our money is safe – there is no adequate protection for our finances
  3. We feel that our job is secure – even the best employees are let go
  4. We feel safe with our family and friends – but even they cannot keep us safe, no matter how much they have good intentions to do so.

Let’s RememberOur Only Hope for True Security in this Life is God – “verses 1-3”

  1. God is a Place of Protection – He is our Refuge – v1
  2. God is a Source of Power – He is our Strength – v1
  3. God is an available Source of Rescue – He is our present Help in Trouble – v1
  4. God is a Rock of Courage in this Dangerous World – v2-3

“Psalms 91:1-5” says – He that dwells in High God’s presence, spends the night in Shaddai’s shadow, Say this: “God, you’re my refuge. I trust in you and I’m safe!” That’s right – he rescues you from hidden traps, shields you from deadly hazards. His huge outstretched arms protect you – under them you’re perfectly safe; his arms fend off all harm. Fear nothing – not wild wolves in the night, not flying arrows in the day……” The Message

Let’s Remember God is a Provider “verses – 4-5”

It was Missionary statesman Hudson Taylor who once said in respect of both Gods Faithfulness and Supply – “God’s work done in God’s way will never lack God’s supply.”

What is it that we discover in God when we take time to be still and we let go?

  • We discover that all we have comes from God
  • We discover that He provides for us Matthew 6:25-34″
  • We discover that self-reliance and self-sufficiency rather than dependence upon Him creates the white noise of anxiety.

God has in Christ provided to us both Serenity of Life and an Abundant Future.

“Psalms 23:2” – He makes me to lie down in green pastures: he leads me beside the still waters.”

“Revelation 22:1-3” Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb down the middle of the great street of the city. On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations.  No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him.” NIV

Let’s Remember God is the Source of Power “verses – 6-7”

In our ever busy lives we often find ourselves with a Power Problem. Not that there is not a source of incomprehensible power available No! But our Hanging onto our self-sufficiency we find ourselves in want.

What does this look like?

  • We find ourselves being Power Hungry – We crave power for our personal gain
  • We find ourselves being Power Deficient – We are drained of power because of its improper or insufficient use
  • We find ourselves being in a state of Power Off – We are too lazy even to turn on the spiritual switch that will make us effective for God

The problem is not the availability of power No! It is accessing and using the power rightly that is the problem.

In Stillness, in Letting Go, in ceasing our Striving we find a fresh revelation of what is ours in the resurrection of Christ 2 Corinthians 13:4″ says – “For to be sure, he was crucified in weakness, yet he lives by God’s power. Likewise, we are weak in him, yet by God’s power we will live with him….”

Let’s Remember God is the Source of Peace “verses – 8-11”

In the Miss Congeniality film “2000” Sandra Bullock who plays the Beauty Pageant Queen says: –

“Stan Fields: “What is the one most important thing our society needs? Gracie Hart: That would be… harsher punishment for parole violators, Stan. Gracie Hart: And world peace!”

It’s the common humorous phase that is used “World Peace”. We need to remember though that peace is as elusive as finding Gold in your backyard.

Where are people looking?

  • In the World at large – We can’t find it in the world – All we discover are wars and rumours of wars, violence and sin – No Peace
  • In Religion – We can’t find it in religion – More people have met violent deaths at the hands of religion than in all the wars of the past 500 years combined – Not Peace.
  • In Fleshly Appetites – We can’t find it in fleshly appetites – Over indulgence inevitably leads destruction – Not Peace

God say: –

“Psalms 46:10” – says, “Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.”

  • This is literally translated – to sink, relax, sink down, or hang limp, be feeble, i.e., be in a state of lacking power or force.

The basic 3 conditions for Stillness / Peace are: –

  • A Focused Mindset – Isaiah 26:3″You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast,
    because they trust in you”
     NIV
  • Christ-Centeredness –John 14:27″Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” NIV
  • Christs Salvation – Romans 5:1″Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we[a] have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ…” NIV

Eckhart Tolle said “When you lose touch with inner stillness, you lose touch with yourself. When you lose touch with yourself, you lose yourself in the world.” As far as I know he is not a Christian but what he said is very true. If you lose you God Birthed Stillness you then you lose touch with yourself, you lose yourself in the world.

 

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