Friday, November 27, 2015

Be Still

As we enter into the season of Advent,

This slow walk to Bethlehem where a brilliant star will soon appear over a lowly little manger pointing us to the greatest gift ever given,

I want these words to continue to resonate in my heart:

Be still . . .

Be still . . .

Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for Him.  
(Psalm 37:7)

Beautiful words ~ ancient and true ~ and I pray they will sink in deep --- so very deep.

How I long to be still this year and wait patiently for His coming.

And I will try to be still, but inside my heart there’s an increasing angst as I’m reminded that Christmastime can be so very loud.

The world will constantly tell me to shop, buy, wrap, add lights and bows and garland and tinsel, to bake sweet treats, and make the first 25 days in December sparkle like the prettiest things I can find on Pinterest.

Sadly, it can be a convincing voice, but I hope for this year to be different.

I pray that I will not give ear to this beckoning call to chaos, but will allow the sacred call to stillness to overwhelm me instead.

As I wrestle with this inner struggle, (that I feel guilty about having at all), I’m reminded of the story of Mary and Martha of Bethany, found in Luke chapter 10.

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As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, 
he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. 
She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. 
But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. 
She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me 
to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”

“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, 
“you are worried and upset about many things, 
but few things are needed—or indeed only one. 
Mary has chosen what is better, 
and it will not be taken away from her.”

(Luke 10:38-42)

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On this day after Thanksgiving, 

The biggest, craziest shopping day of the year, 

I did choose to be still. 

I did not leave my house at all, but took time to sit in quiet devotion, to read His word and listen to His voice, and I did not worry one bit about all of the preparations.

But this is just one day. 

There are many more days to come before I’ll be singing Silent Night by candlelight at Christmas Eve service, and Christmas morning is sure to arrive as well, when I do plan to have gifts to give my family and a lighted Christmas tree to place those gifts beneath.

Honestly, I know there will be times from now until then when I will be much like Martha, “distracted by all of the preparations”, and surely there will be instances when I’m, “worried and upset about many things”, but I pray I will still find many moments to be like Mary.

To choose the one thing that is needed.

Sitting still at the feet of Jesus and waiting patiently for Him.

For that alone is the one thing that can truly satisfy.

And it will never be taken away.

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