So… there’s a pandemic going on. Needless to say, we’re all pretty aware of the way our collective worlds came to a screeching halt sometime around March 2020. Unless, of course, you have been living beneath a rock, in a cave or on a remote island this year. If this is your situation, I’d suggest diving back under and sitting tight for a bit. But for the rest of us, there is no doubt this year has broken open a great deal in our lives.
At first, it felt jarring, unnatural, frustrating and (oftentimes) fear filled. Our lives went from traveling full speed ahead to an absolute standstill. Our ears buzzing and humming from the sudden change in trajectory.
I remember the first weeks of sheltering in place felt immobilizing, even as my mind spun with thoughts of, “But I need to go to Target… to work… to school functions… to the gym… to meet a friend… to…” Nowhere. What I needed was to be still. (Or, let’s face it, as still as a mother with young kids at home was able to be during waking hours.)
Yet even in the midst of forced stillness, I struggled with it. I found against the opportunity to hold still for the first time in my adult life, and instead focused on the loss of what had been. One morning though, the sands of time slowly seemed to settle into a new perspective as Psalm 43:10 continuously moved through my mind.
“Be still, and know that I am God…” (Psalm 43:10).
An uncomfortable realization struck me: I had been moving through life without a willingness to be still and wait on God. The organization and all-out sprint of my life was such that it was self-propelled, busy and full of distractions. Always trying to get to the next mile marker whether it be the weekend, the completion of a work project, the next holiday or vacation. Anything but being still. It had been a long time since I had stilled my heart long enough to sit in awe of God. To allow myself space to bask in the profound realization of his magnitude.
“‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future’” (Jeremiah 29:11).
Isn’t it so true though? We spend so much of our time moving through life, what a gift to be commanded to be still in order to acknowledge that he is God. He is holy. He is everything. Because really, no matter how hard we try to run to the next goal, foster the perfect family life for our kids, or direct our own paths, we will still fall short of what HE has in store for us. He is ready to share himself with us, if only we can be still long enough to know him and hear him.
Journal Activity & Questions
- Collect your journal and pen, find a quiet spot and be still for a moment.
- Write down Psalm 43:10.
- List what knowing God means to you.
- Spend time in prayer. Ask God to help you in your stillness and your knowledge of him.
- Write down the prayers on your heart and any insights.
- Repeat and see how God comes into your stillness.
Annie and her husband live in Minneapolis with their two kids – ages 8 and 4. After an extensive tenure working in the fashion industry for a major retailer, Annie opened her own wardrobe and interior styling company, Hudson & Wilde. She also works as an editor and content developer. Annie is passionate about creating community and connections with people, especially women, and she also loves to read, write, drink coffee, exercise, and travel. Connect with her on Instagram @aevelsizer and @hudsonandwilde!