Several weeks ago, we centered ourselves around 1 Kings 19 for worship on a Wednesday night and I have carried that with me, continuing to ground myself in this passage.
“Then [Elijah] was told, 'Go, stand on the mountain at attention before God. God will pass by.'
“A hurricane wind ripped through the mountains and shattered the rocks before God, but God wasn’t to be found in the wind; after the wind an earthquake, but God wasn’t in the earthquake; and after the earthquake fire, but God wasn’t in the fire; and after the fire a gentle and quiet whisper.” (1 Kings 19:11-13, The Message)
The world can be overwhelming. Not only do we continue to deal with the effects of a global pandemic, but it is overlaid by confronting racism, ecological crises and a divisive political climate. All of these can be unsettling in their own way, making my mind work overtime so I find refuge in the quiet, whisper of God.
One spiritual practice that I have been engaging is the practice of silence. As I sit in silence for a specified period of time, I seek to quiet my thoughts and make space to hear God. I have found help in Ruth Haley Barton’s Invitation to Silence and Solitude, as she seeks to help us recognize the things that keep us from silence.
The next time you are looking to center yourself and remember God’s peaceful presence, I invite you to try the follow practice, based on Psalm 46.
Psalm 46:10 says, “Be still, and know that I am God!”
Find a quiet, safe place and slowly read the whole verse.
Be still, and know that I am God!
Breathe in the silence for a minute or so, quieting your thoughts. Each subsequent time you read the verse, you will drop off one or two words at the end.
Be still, and know that I am
Be still and know
Even when we feel overwhelmed, we know that nothing is greater than God.
Even when we feel like we have too much to do and struggle to juggle it all, we know that we can rest in God, that the Creator can sustain the world, even if we step away for a minute.
Even when we feel like there is no way to right all that is wrong in our world, we know that we can trust in God, that the Redeemer will make all things right.
Even when we feel like we are worn out and cannot go any farther, we know that we can rest in God, that the Spirit will breathe new life in each one of us.
I invite you to take a few minutes, to simply be still and know that God is God.
In the abiding hope of the Risen Lord,
PS We will continue to gather for contemplative worship on Wednesday nights in October, so please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like the login information to join us! We would love to have you!