“God doesn’t send or allow plagues to kill but to teach.” But how can we learn if we don’t sit still and listen? God’s word to me at the beginning of this lockdown was “Be still and know that I am God”. Being still can be a frustration or a gift of blessing and peace. Anyone who has been on retreat has some idea of this and if you haven’t been on retreat yet, imagine – and plan to go!
I have read several articles about how to cope and they are mainly about me, myself and I: self-help, self-transformation or ‘tune in to a higher power’. But they give no idea about who or what that power might be.
Technology helps, even I admit that, and I am learning how to make better use of it. But there’s no substitute for presence and voice. However, let’s remember what Jesus said to Thomas: “Blessed are those who believe without seeing.” This blessing is for us if we are willing to be still and know that He is God. And in turning to Him and giving thanks with a grateful heart, we find hope, security and peace. So instead of turning to me, myself and I, I will rather turn to my Father in Heaven who says “You are my child, and I love you and I care.” So we can, as it were, just curl up beside Him in the quietness, just enjoying being with Him, like the old man who said, “I look at Him and He looks at me and we’re together”.
So whatever the uncertainties (and they are real and there are many), face them, name them to yourself and to God and hear Him say: ”Don’t be troubled, be still and know that I AM God. I long to love, care, help, deliver, comfort – I AM God.” As I mulled over that word of truth, the words of a song we sing came to mind “Jehovah Jireh, my Provider”. The word Jireh is from a root that means to see, and the God we seek to find and know in the stillness is God for whom to see means to act, to do something. He spoke to Moses at the burning bush “I have seen the misery of my people …. I am concerned … so I have come down to rescue them” (Ex 3:7)
He sees us in the loneliness, fear, and uncertainly of lockdown and longs to come down and to be with us in our stillness. But we do need to be still. And in our stillness, what do we learn about Jehoveh Jireh our Provider? Our God who sees and acts? Who and what is He for us? Emmanuel, God with us in Jesus? Provider, Shepherd, Healer, our peace, our righteousness and shammah (which means here, there and everywhere)? So be still, reflect, know and be blessed!
Ever so gently Your spirit calls to all who hear
Ever so gently the sound of your voice, quiet yet clear ….
Your voice is the calm in the storm
It’s the whisper of love that remains ….
Ever so gently I hear Your voice pulling me near
Ever so gently Your word of life stronger than fear
15 May 2020
PS – We have uploaded a song called Peace be Still, written by The Belonging Company and originally sung by Lauren Daigle, covered by Eric Myhill, to YouTube, click here if you wish to watch it, and meditate on the words.