Be still in the presence of the Lord, and wait patiently for him to act. Don’t worry about evil people who prosper or fret about their wicked schemes. (Psalms 37:7)
The phrase “Be still” has been pounding through my head over the past few weeks. “Be still, and know that I am God!” What a powerful statement that is, but also one that gives us a direction on how to know that He is God – Be still.
In my work with adolescence and emerging adults, I find this term foreign to them. They do not know how to “be still”. It is in those times we are still that God speaks to us, shows us this wonderful world He created, heals us, gives us peace and most of all, assures us that He is there. I hear many complaints from older generations about the attention span of the younger because they do not know how to be still. As I walk through a typical waiting room at any doctor/dentist office, there is the evidence that our youth do know how to be still. We have not allowed them the time to learn how to be still so that they can hear God and know God. Instead, we have pushed every handheld game system into their hands to keep them busy. We have given them iPod’s to listen to music or netbooks and tablets to play games. We fill their minds with so much technology; there is no room for anything else. We teach them by using these devices that they must be mentally busy all the time. When do they have time to “be still”?
I can remember as young father taking my children for hikes through our world. We weren’t always hiking in the mountains, or following trails, sometimes it was just a simple walk through our neighborhood. During this time we would talk about the surrounding environment, the trees, the flowers, and also that dead thing in the road. This was a time of teaching them to be still and know God’s handiwork. It was a time to help them learn to relax their mind and open it so that God could penetrate it. One of my favorite things to do was to take them outside at night and stare up into the sky, gazing at the stars and the moon. We would lay a blanket on the ground or recline back on the porch and just take in the vastness of this universe. There was much time nothing was said, just the art of “being still” was taking place as well as gaining the peace that there is a God who created all this for us.
Spending time with my grandchildren is my happiest time of all, but they have also been infected by the technology. When they are with their Granny and Pappy, we will hear “I’m bored”, and my typical response is “I am so happy for you”. Of course, they just give me that “look” but I am being honest. It is in our boredom that we can come to know God, we can become more creative in finding things to do, or we can turn these hands the opposite way and use them for wrong doing. It is our job as parents and grandparents to help our children understand how to be bored and that this is a time for our brain to rest and for us to find peace. It is a time to learn to connect with nature, thus connect with God on a simple level children can understand.
It is in Ecclesiastes that Solomon tells us there is a time and season for everything. In verse 3:7, he states “A time to be quiet and a time to speak”. He goes on to say “Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end”. This brings us to the second Scripture listed in the beginning, “Be still in the presence of the Lord, and wait patiently for him to act. Don’t worry about evil people who prosper or fret about their wicked schemes. (Psalms 37:7)
Too many people today are caught up in what someone else is doing or getting. Our children have become caught in this trap and they too worry about things they should not. If only they were taught to “be still” they would know the Grace of God, the Peace of God and the assurance that He is God. In this time they spend worrying, they could be spending time appreciating the many glorious things God has created for us to enjoy while we live out our daily lives.
Some of this is too deep for children to understand, the main point is for the parents and grandparents. Teach your children to “be still” so that they may be able to have a clear and open mind that will allow them to “know God”. Don’t fill it up with technology, fill it with quiet time together, nature walks alone and talk about this great big universe that God created for us to enjoy and how wonderful He is for doing that. You will find yourself connect at a deeper and more spiritual level with your child/grandchild and they will find themselves wanting to know more about God and all He has done for us.