Stillness. What is it?

It’s context has the ability to mold it but the stillness I am thinking of is connected to the line: “Be still, and know that I am God.” This comes from Psalm 46. An often added title to the chapter is “God Is Our Fortress” pointing to a context that God is our defender and shields us as is seen in the chapter. He “is our refuge and strength,…” and we should “…not fear though the earth gives way,…”

So why the “still” in verse 10?

The point is that God is in control and He has your back despite how bleak things may get. “Be still…” is to not worry or fret because “The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress. (v. 11)”. However, it goes further than simply a statement of “don’t worry”.

As one who has struggled with anxiety throughout life (but with increased control thanks to God’s work), stillness means more than just pointing to steer away from worry. Anxiousness affects us physically. We shake a foot, bounce a knee, chew on the inside of our mouth/lip, wring our hands, pace, disorganized thoughts,….I could keep going. These actions are often brought on in response to anxiety but they can also feed back  to inflame the anxiety/worry further. As such, being still isn’t just about relying on God in thought but in action as well. With His influence in our lives, we have the ability to change our physical actions. We need to consciously tell our bodies to stop shaking that foot and take back the pilot seat of our bodies. This is often more easily done in a quieter environment accompanied by controlling your breathing but with practice can be done anywhere.

Stillness. It is about both our minds and our bodies surrendering to God and His promises for us.

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