“Be still and know that I am God!” - Psalm 46:10 - this verse has always been a favorite of mine. It brings me comfort in the midst of the storms of life. It is written on a painting on my office wall. And as I write this article I look at it yet again, slowing myself down, and remembering who is God and who is not.
It’s so easy to get caught up in the hectic pace of life at this time of year. Our days seem to become fuller and fuller. There is always so much to do in order to get ready for holiday guests. As a child I once thought there was a lot of time between Halloween and New Year’s Day, but as I have grown up the time between these holidays has blurred with little breathing room as we prepare and celebrate Thanksgiving, Advent, and Christmas. There is no break to rest and relax as we prepare our homes for the holidays and still participate in all the daily events of life. This lack of time leaves little space to remember who we are and why God created us.
The 10 Commandments tell us clearly we belong to God. We have been adopted as heirs of Christ in our baptism. The first commandment tells us – I am the Lord your God and you shall have no other God before me. We belong fully to Jesus who creates, saves, and sustains us. Yet our lives often do not reflect this fact.
The third commandment tells us the importance of rest as we remember the Sabbath and keep it holy. The Sabbath was never created for God, who does not require to rest, but instead the Sabbath was created as a gift of God for us. We need it not only to survive but to function. We often believe the Sabbath rest must occur only Sundays, but truly this Sabbath rest is something our bodies are designed to do on a daily basis. It is a time for us to stop everything and refocus on what is truly important in our lives – God, family, and community.
Keeping the Sabbath and remembering God is Lord of all is something for us to do daily. As you go through these days, I challenge you to set aside 15 minutes each day to stop and be still. Don’t think about what needs to be done. Don’t see it as just one more item to be checked off a list in an already full schedule. Instead focus the time as a space where you are privileged to spend it in stillness with Jesus, getting to know him as Lord of all. Take the time to just be present, listening to Jesus as you wait for his coming again.
“Be still and know that I am God!”