This week's encouraging post brought to you by Anna Woo
I recently had a conversation with an out of state friend that I’ve been witnessing to and she shared that she hears so many voices of thoughts when in quiet and in stillness and that it’s unsettling. But rather than avoiding sitting in stillness, she identified that stillness was the very thing that she needed to practice. Stillness is an exercise of disciplining the will, to pause.
But this made me think of what would keep us, who have the hope of Christ, from coming to be still with Him? For believers, however, we know who we would be still with, so asking ourselves questions around identifying any barriers that keep us from entering into times of stillness in the Lord's presence is a good exercise to do! Are there any thoughts around God that might be keeping us from entering into times of stillness with Jesus? Are there any thoughts around how we view ourselves that might be deterring us? Is it that we don’t see it as a useful use of our time? Or that we feel like we have to get our ducks in a row before coming to Him and just, being? I encourage you, speak it into the light with another brother or sister in Christ! The enemy schemes to keep us from resting in His presence because he knows there is grace and beauty that comes from that place of rest and stillness with the Lord.
In Stillness, A Peace of Mind
In stillness with the Lord, when we turn the gaze of our thoughts to gaze at God, we enter into reorienting our minds to God’s truths, God’s bigger perspective of things seeing circumstances through His eyes, and God’s bigger plan that we’ve been born into (which is a relationship with Him and a participation with Him to worship Him and bring Him glory). We’ll find that other things that might be taking up estate preoccupying our mind falls in their rightful place, bringing about inner peace. Our mind gets to rest in knowing that God is capable of doing all things, and yet He has invited us into participating with Him to bring Him worship and glory, allowing us to view life through a lens of grace and stewardship onto Him out of love! What a beautiful thing.
What are the things that are preoccupying your mind? Are they voices of thoughts that need to discern whether they are of God or not? Are they taking up too much estate in your mind pulling you away from living connected to God, connected to your present, connected to your current relationships? Are you experiencing inner peace through experiencing Kingdom values taking residences in your heart and mind in Kingdom priority? Come and sit with Jesus in His presence in stillness, inclining your thoughts to be preoccupied by His truth, His bigger perspective, His bigger plan!
In Stillness, Created for Love
In stillness when we turn the gaze of our will to gaze at the beauty of Jesus Christ, His embodiment of God manifest in revelation, the beauty of His gospel that He came to deliver, and the beauty of the invitation for us and the rest of humanity to experience wholeness in Christ, the other persons or things that takes residence in our hearts falls into their rightful place. What is greater in magnitude in love than Jesus and His gospel? Everything else pales in comparison!
Gazing at Him gives us space to be refueled; a grace that comes from receiving His love and loving Him in return. This exchange is a fundamental part of our relationship with Him. We were created for love and not just to receive love, but to love as well. When we sit with the Lord to just be with Him for who He is and make Him the focus of our attention, any emotion that is not of him gets pushed aside and replaced with being loved by Him and being in love with Him. What a beautiful thing.
Do you have emotions that come from the desire for control like worry or fear? or emotions that come from hopelessness like overwhelming sadness? or emotions that come from false thinking such as self-devaluation? Come, and be still in the Lord’s presence, with Him as the primary person you come to be with above any other person or reason! Come, and in stillness in the Lord’s presence, let us delight in God for who He is and receive His delight for who we are! Come, come before Him and still the soul in His presence, and just be.