Be Still

It had been “one of those” mornings.It was the middle of December–Christmastime. Things were crazy. Everything from the past two months seemed to have hit me that day–my newborn, my husband’s surgery, a trip to Colorado, Christmas preparations, and a deployment date looming in the near future. This particular day was filled with a million little things, and I felt I was hanging by a thread.

In the late afternoon, I finally managed to find a moment to take a shower. I thought if I could just take a quick hot shower, it would wash away the craziness of the day and all would be fine. An hour passed, and between several phone calls and door-bell rings, I still wasn’t in the shower.

A harried mess. That’s what I was. I sat Troy down in my bedroom with a stack of books and a couple toys, put 6-week-old Merritt in his bouncy seat, and hopped in the shower.

But, unlike my expectations, the stress didn’t wash away with the water. I could only feel the tension in my heart building as I ran my long to-do list through my head. I could hear the ringing of the phone–again. The baby was beginning to get fussy and Troy was tired of looking at books. It had been all of two minutes.

I pushed my hair under the stream of water, letting it rinse the shampoo out of my hair. As I wiped the water beads out of my eyes, I heard it.

Be still.

Gently the words came. I pushed them out of my head, trying to focus on the days, weeks ahead of me. There was so much to think about, plan for, keep straight in my head. How desperately I wished time could stop and give me a week to catch up. It was all just so much and I…

Be still.

So softly, that Voice spoke directly to my heart.

Lord, don’t be ridiculous. Be still? Now? Not happening.

I heard the baby crying with all his might. Hurry. Rinse out the conditioner. This shower had taken long enough. Next on the list? Get dinner started and then I’d have to hurry…

Be still. Quiet your heart. Know I am God.

I sighed aloud. Okay, Lord. Okay. Quiet my heart. I’ve made a note of it and I’ll be sure to do that. Maybe once the kids are in bed. Or something.

That still, small voice is persistent. Our little back-and-forth continued as I finished up my shower and went about getting ready.

Be still, and know that I am God.

Lord, my heart replied. I already do know you are God. Of course I do.

Be still, and know that I am God. Quiet your heart before me.

~*~

This evening, things were completely chaotic in our house. What was really only about thirty minutes felt like days.

We were on our way to our church’s annual mission’s dinner. I had made food, was scheduled to work in the nursery for the service after the dinner, and was hoping to catch some of the amazing man, Don Sisk’s, preaching through the television screen in the nursery.

But my reality at that moment wasn’t so rosy. Both boys were crying. This was not just fussiness or whimpering. Troy was sobbing as if his life was ending. Merritt was screaming with everything in him.

I was beside myself.

I hurried them both along. I tossed brownies on a plate. I ran in my heels to fill diaper bags. I replaced the binky. I consoled. I held. I got impatient and spoke too harshly. I walked into the kitchen, away from the boys and let out a long at-my-wit’s-end-again groan. I put the baby in his carseat, directed Troy to the door, slung my purse and the diaper bag over a shoulder and picked up my plate of brownies, nearly forgetting to grab my Bible with that extra hand I don’t have.

And then I heard it in my heart, always so soft and gentle.

Be still.

I was frustrated. Lord, this is NOT the time. I don’t have a second for stillness right now. This is crazy. I feel like I’m falling apart. I don’t even know what I was thinking in imagining I could go to this dinner on my own with the boys.

I locked the front door.

Be still, and know that I am God.

Lord, please, please… what are you trying to tell me? I DO know You are God. You know I can’t be still right now. I don’t understand.

My Jesus is so loving. You know I’m God? Do you really know I’m God? If you know I’m God, you know I’m capable of handling all of this. You know this moment would be better if you placed it in my hands. You know I will fill you with My perfect strength in this moment of weakness. Quiet your heart before Me. Be still, and know that I am God.

I was stopped at a red light. I closed my eyes. This wasn’t a mere suggestion. It was a command.

Be still. Know I am God.

The boys were still crying. I told myself to never again try to pack so much in one long day.

I don’t feel it, Lord. I don’t feel quiet or still. But I do want to truly know you are God. Please let me see You in this moment, Jesus.

Are you weary tonight? I am. Are you frazzled or is your heart troubled? To say that there is ever time for real stillness in the life of a woman is nearly laughable.

And yet, He whispers…

Be still.

Know that I am God.

Until we’re still… until our hearts are quieted before Him… until we stop waiting for things to slow down before really looking into His face… until we obey His command to be still, even when there is no stillness in sight, we can never expect to fully know He is God.

Be still.

14 Comments

  1. Michaela S. says:

    Soooo amazing!!!

  2. Love this one just as much as the first time…. 🙂

  3. Anonymous says:

    Ashleigh,
    Thank you for writing this post! Just what all of us need to hear, and be reminded of… This one really encouraged me. We all need to be still more and listen for His voice. Things can get to busy, but you’re right…the day will go better if you listen.
    Thanks again for writing, and God bless you! -Katie

  4. eliasboudinotismyfriend says:

    Dear Ashleigh,
    This post encouraged my soul so much this morning that I sat right down and wrote the following poem. I pray it will bless you and any others that may visit here.
    Miriam

    http://www.freewebs.com/poems4him

    Be Still
    Based on Psalm 46:10
    July 8, 2008

    “Be Still,”
    I hear His quiet voice.
    “My child,
    Within me now rejoice
    And know
    Thy God I always am
    This do you know
    And understand?”

    “Yes, I know,”
    Unto the Lord I say.
    “You are my God
    In each and ev’ry day.

    “Be still,”
    I hear it yet again.
    Does He not know
    The great big mess I’m in?
    “There’s so much that I
    Have to do today
    And yet
    You want me just to stay?
    But Lord!
    I must do this and that
    And quiet time
    I lack.”

    “Be still,”
    My God doth persevere.
    “If you know that I am God
    Why do you worry here?
    If you know that I am God
    You’ll let me take control
    You’ll let me calm your heart
    And bring peace into your soul.
    Be still.”

    I place
    My days into His hand.
    I rest
    Within His perfect plan.
    I joy
    For He is always mine.
    I’m calmed
    By His sweet peace sublime.
    I hear
    His sweet voice ev’ry day.
    I love
    To hear Him call and say:
    “Be still.”

  5. This was beautiful! Just what I needed to read today. Thank you Ashleigh!

  6. Heartful of Hope says:

    Oh, sweet Ashleigh, this post was encouraging when I first read it on your blog – but I really, really needed the reminder this morning… God must have known! Thank you.

    ~Nicole

  7. Amen.
    Lord, teach me to be still. Today. In this moment…

  8. Thank you, Ashleigh for sharing this! As a young mom, I have experienced almost identical feelings and frustrations… and wondered how I could possibly have a quiet heart in the midst of it all. But God is so good, isn’t He, and gives us moments where His peace and joy shine through to our hearts even when everything else seems like chaos. “When my heart is overwhelmed, lead me to the Rock that is higher than I” Psalms ?
    God bless you!

  9. Great post! good reminder to ‘come aside and rest awhile’. Blessings

  10. Anonymous says:

    Oh Ashleigh dear, the Lord Himself has spoken to me through your post this morning! I had been ‘carrying the world upon my shoulders’, worrying like crazy about one particular aspect of my future, forgetting Who’s actually in control.

    We serve a wonderful, wonderful God.

    Lee

  11. Amen Ashleigh..that was such a beautiful entry…so beautiful and haunting..God tries every day to tell each of us to be still, we don’t always LISTEN, but that’s another important command of God besides being still…i hear often from God…”Be still my Child, know that I’m God, be silent and Listen…” that’s all i hear sometimes and that’s comforting and enough..i’m sorry this is much shorter than usual, but i need to do some meditation and journaling..so i bid you all adieu..have a restful wonderful night girls..take care!
    God Bless you all!

    Blessings & hugs!
    To God be all glory!

    In Him, Jane.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Thank you so much for that Ashleigh. I needed it today.
    God bless!

  13. That is beautiful! Thanks for sharing; I really needed it after the morning I had today.

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