I’m not good at being still. I’m not someone who always needs to be running around to the next event, but I am not good at being still; even in my sleep I toss and turn. I was recently sick and it was another reminder of how bad I am at not doing anything. What struck me, though, was that I felt useless if I wasn’t doing something. Somehow I was inadequate if I couldn’t do something for myself or if I couldn’t fix something in the house right away. This can be a trap in which Satan would love to ensnare me, but when I turn to the Word of the Lord I find that rest is important—and when it comes to feeling inadequate, I need only look to the cross.
“Be still, and know that I am God.” (Psalm 46:10)
"Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him.” (Psalm 37:7)
“The Lord will fight for you, and you have only to be silent.” (Exodus 14:14)
“For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from him.” (Psalm 62:5)
“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6-7)
In the Gospels, we see many times that Jesus was intentional about getting away by himself and praying and resting; if Jesus needed to rest, how much more do we? In fact, it was a time of rest when Jesus rebuked the winds and waves by commanding them to be still; he was asleep on the boat while it was happening!
“Jesus was sleeping at the back of the boat with his head on a cushion. The disciples woke him up, shouting, ‘Teacher, don’t you care that we’re going to drown?’ When Jesus woke up, he rebuked the wind and said to the waves, ‘Silence! Be still!’ Suddenly the wind stopped, and there was a great calm. Then he asked them, ‘Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?’ The disciples were absolutely terrified. ‘Who is this man?’ they asked each other. ‘Even the wind and waves obey him!’” (Mark 4:38-41)
“After telling everyone good-bye, he went up into the hills by himself to pray.” (Mark 6:46)
“But Jesus often withdrew to the wilderness for prayer.” (Luke 5:16)
“Before daybreak the next morning, Jesus got up and went out to an isolated place to pray.” (Mark 1:35)
“Then Jesus said, ‘Let’s go off by ourselves to a quiet place and rest awhile.’” (Mark 6:31)
Let us follow Jesus’ example of resting and making time for private prayer. It will refresh our spirits and give us necessary rest. Not only did Jesus set the example, but he also promised in Matthew 11:28, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.” So rest in Him, remembering it’s okay to be still.
May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.