I’m a pretty high achiever. I like to be busy and productive. I’m not one for lollygagging (as my grandma would say). As you might imagine, I struggle with verses where God instructs his people to be still. Historically, I saw stillness as a sign of laziness, which isn’t at all true. I believe that when we choose to be still and wait on God, it’s an active posture. God is active, not passive, and our stillness shouldn’t be either.
Throughout the New Testament, we read again and again that Jesus would withdraw to spend time with God. He would often isolate himself for a quiet moment of prayer. He spent so much of his day pouring out and ministering to people that he needed those precious moments alone with God.
“Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.” Mark 1:35 (NIV)
“Immediately Jesus made his disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to Bethsaida, while he dismissed the crowd. After leaving them, he went up on a mountainside to pray.” Mark 6:45-46 (NIV)
I’ve heard, and even said myself, that if Jesus had to take time to meet with God, imagine how much more we need that! Though I have encouraged other people to follow in the footsteps of Jesus, I had gotten away from that practice.
I realized that I didn’t take the time to really savor God. Sure, I would pray while driving in my car or while brushing my teeth, but I didn’t spend intimate time with him regularly. I didn’t read his word in such a way that gave him plenty of room to speak. My days tended to be filled with noise and busyness; my life wasn’t characterized by silence and stillness.
For many years, meeting with God felt like a task on a to-do list.
Usually, it was a happy task, but a task nonetheless.
This is why I wrote Behold: 40 Days of Seeing and Savoring God. I hope and pray that this would be more than just a devotional, but would be an invitation for us to slow down and spend intimate time with God. I see this as a tool for us to develop new habits when it comes to Bible-reading and quiet time with God.
We can be like Jesus and carve out time throughout our days to meet with God, breathe in his presence, and create space for him to speak. I wonder how our lives might change if we adopted a posture of beholding him more regularly. I suspect the effects would be far-reaching; I’m excited to find out!
Do you ever struggle with stillness?
How do you create rhythms for silence and stillness in your busy life?
To go Deeper: Read The State of the Heart, Are You Enjoying God?
Check out Behold: 40 Days of Seeing and Savoring God, currently available on Amazon.
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