The Importance of Being Still

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Last month Jesse had a seizure. I still remember the phone call from his school nurse. There was slight alarm in her voice, but mostly matter-of-fact. Jesse doesn’t have a history of seizures so this caught everyone off guard. For some reason the moment I heard the word “seizure” I went on autopilot. Rushing out of the house I basically flew to his school. The ambulance blazed sirens loud, passing me at the stop light. I knew those ear cringing alarms were for my son, and my stomach twisted. Pulling in right behind the ambulance at school, I found Jesse quietly sitting up in the clinic. Everything was swirly but not once did I freak out or break down.

That was on a Thursday. I answered the questions from the nurse, school staff, paramedics, husband, doctors, and grandparents. My mind and heart stayed occupied on Jesse the entire weekend, sticking to him like glue. On Sunday we went to church and I still had not emotionally responded to his seizure. Jesse went into his classroom while Jason and I sat in the service. For the first time since receiving that phone call my heart was quiet. In the hush of not asking or answering questions, hearing only the sound of the organ pumping through the sanctuary my eyes filled up. I had not been apart from him since it happened, somehow thinking my presence could prevent another one from occurring. My insides started to crumble realizing the seriousness of it all and how grateful I was he was okay.

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Whenever I keep busy or at least mindlessly pre-occupied, the heart issues well up during the week and go unchecked. When there is no room for quiet there is no chance to hear God’s whisper. It is when God gets me alone the dust settles a bit and my spirit is most vulnerable. He sustains us in the storms and waits for us in the quiet. Psalm 46 came to mind days later noting the significance of being still before the Lord.

“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.” (Ps. 46:10-11 NIV; emphasis mine)

Even when our world comes crashing down the Father assures us that He is “our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble” (Ps. 46:1). Monday through Saturday I blanket my heart to keep from listening to the God of the Universe. Sometimes its unintentional, sometimes it isn’t. When we feel restless it is because we are not properly resting in Jesus. He has Power and I disregard it as not enough. Grasping the wind to satisfy my soul doesn’t work.

Even as I sit before Him, my mind races with all the things to do today. The Enemy loves to work overtime when we become intentional in pursuing Christ. Don’t let that deter you. When we persevere in our time alone with Jesus and hush our souls, He starts to show up. God has so much to offer and teach us, all we need is to be still and a willingness to listen. You might be surprised what the Lord reveals to you – sin, hurt, suppressed emotions; I always am. Since God made us He knows how we operate better than our selves. The Father of Heaven knows you perfectly, inside and out.

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If we aren’t learning to quiet our hearts as we enter His Majestic Presence we will burn out. Joy is found in worshipping God, which comes from our spirits keeping in step with His. There is one rhythm, the same will, a shared love in connection to fellowship with the Lord.

Jesse’s medical emergency was a wake up call for our family. It also showed me how often I live my life in fight or flight mode, keeping my mind and heart cluttered. Today is not Sunday, so I don’t have the privilege to sit in the sanctuary. But on every other day in the week I can start to carve quiet moments alone with Him. The couch, the kitchen sink, the car are all places that can be turned into a place of worship. Everywhere we go we can be living sanctuaries, knowing the importance of being still.

 

Grace upon grace,

April

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