Devotional: ‘Be Still and Wait’

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Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him…”  (Psalm 37:7)

Many of us are so accustomed to rushing from here to there that it seems almost abnormal whenever we take time to rest. We live in a society addicted to activity and there are several reasons why many of us are vulnerable.

Activity often gives us a sense of importance. Though we may complain when we are overworked, many of us feel the most needed when we are the busiest. Another reason we become addicted to activity is because it helps us to feel like we are in control. As long as I am doing something I am helping to determine my destiny. Yet the primary reason why we are often activity-addicts is because we lack the wisdom of patience. Let me illustrate.

Study through the Old Testament and you will find numerous examples of men and women who had to be doing something. Abraham and Sarah were promised a child, yet they needed to wait. As a matter of fact, God’s plan was for them to wait for many years. But like most of us, Abraham and Sarah got tired of waiting and decided that they needed to help God move along in the process. Sarah’s servant became a surrogate mother and gave birth to a conflict the world is still witnessing today.

Moses is another good example. Once he realized that he was a part of the nation Israel, he decided that it was time for him to take matters into his own hands and help God deliver his people from Egyptian bondage. The result of his running ahead of God was murder and a 40 year sentence to the backside of the desert.

Rebekah is yet another person in the Old Testament who gave into her craving for activity and did something very foolish. Because she couldn’t stand to sit still, she caused her favorite son to sin and as a result never saw him again.

Solomon tells us that there is a time and season for everything in life. Resting in the Lord is not a failure to do what needs to be done, but giving God the opportunity to guide us so that we can do what needs to be done.

God has many things that He plans to do both ‘in’ and ‘through’ each of our lives.  Some things He will do today and other things He will wait for tomorrow. It takes great wisdom for us to know not only what God wants to do, but when He wants to do it. Such wisdom does not come from the abundance of activity but resting in a relationship.

Psalm 37:3 Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. 4 Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. 5 Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him and he will do this: 6 He will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn, your vindication like the noonday sun. 7 Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him… NIV

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