So let me start by saying, there’s nothing sexy about being still. Nope, not even a little bit. Being still is positively something I have always entered into begrudgingly. Reason being, it’s uncomfortable. And who’s eager to sign up for that? I’ll wait…
Ok so we have dictionary.com’s definition of being still, but I know what you’re thinking, what does this really mean in the practical sense? I’m glad you asked.
Generally speaking, being still is accepting the freedom from an obligation to act. It’s a commitment of sorts to defer action until you’ve vetted the situation out from every angle and allow the time and space necessary to arrive at a logical solution.
In the spiritual sense (which I’m mostly familiar with), it’s obeying a prompting from the Lord to trust Him while you defer action and await His response.
4 Tenets of Being Still
- Surrendering – There’s a process of surrendering that’s required in order to be still. Otherwise we’d be terribly distracted by the burdens of our heart and constantly tempted to be doing something about them. Whether it’s writing these things down or praying out loud to tell God what you are surrendering to Him, there must be an action that facilitates the surrendering.
- Commitment to inaction or deferment of action – This is an agreement, you will either refrain from action or delay action for a period of time. This inaction could be for a few hours, days, months, or even years.
- Waiting – This may or may not be obvious, but while you wait, you are still being faithful in all other duties. In essence, your life doesn’t stop because you are waiting. Rather, you are still a mom, a husband, a student, an employee, etc. This one area of your life however, requires that you suspend action. Let’s say you found out a co-worker has been leading a campaign behind your back to sabotage all of your work. As opposed to reacting, you realize you need to be still. In being still, you are waiting to hear clearly from God with guidance on how you need to handle this situation. You still show up for work. You still engage with your team. The only difference, you have set this component of your work life aside to properly address it, when and how you are released to do so.
- Receiving – How do you know when you’ve been released? This is a million dollar question folks. The simplest answer is, when you have peace. Now listen, I of all people know that we can manufacture our own peace. So know that, this is not the type of peace I am referring to. When a situation is no longer forced, weighed down by emotion, or selfishly motivated, that my friend is peace. During this time of receiving you are allowing yourself to be filled with what is true, loving, and pure. (I call this God’s Word but you may opt to find this elsewhere.)
When’s the last time you were prompted to be still? Did you respond to the prompting? If so, what was this experience like for you?