God instructs us to be still and take knowledge of Who He is as God.
“Be still and know that I am God” Psalm 46:10
Have you observed how once you are worked up you stop noticing things? In an argument people stop hearing each other and press on to make their point. When we are agitated or distracted by our concerns we are truly ‘distracted’ from paying attention to things that are important to know.
If you have ever experienced a fear attack you know we can be so overwhelmed with fearful prospects that they seem completely insurmountable. Later, once we have settled and look at things in the clear light of day, the problems seem much more manageable.
From time to time when my wife and I are trying to sort through a complicated or emotional subject we will decide to put the issue aside and pick it back up after we have had a good night’s sleep.
People who are forced to be inactive for long periods of time often find that their thoughts are finally able to get to things they have not thought about deeply before. Things can be considered with greater attention when there are no other things demanding our attention.
These reflections might lead to questions about whether multi-tasking and being distracted by modern devices is really as helpful as people think, but I’m not heading there.
What God asks us to do is to ‘switch off’ and quell the many distractions and voices in our head that stop us taking knowledge of the most important thing there is to know – that God is God and all that God is stands above every other consideration.
Other verses talk about us standing still, being disengaged from all the plans and schemes we might employ, so we can let God do what He wants to do.
“Do not be afraid. Stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord, which He will accomplish for you today.” Exodus 14:13
“You will not need to fight in this battle: set yourselves, stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord with you” 2Chronicles 20:17
We are also told that we have spiritual weapons which have the power to take thoughts captive. It is important to arrest thoughts that would otherwise distract us.
“The weapons of our warfare are not human, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds. Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into every thought captive to the obedience of Christ” 2Corinthians 10:4,5
God tells us to know that He is God, but there are competitive thoughts that exalt themselves against the knowledge of God. Part of us capturing the revelation of Who God is and the significance of God being God is that we still our thoughts and agitations, taking time to give attention to God, and what God is doing in and through us.
If you world is so maddeningly busy that you can’t stop and give time for God then you are in an unhappy place. God instructs you to ‘be still’, specifically so you can ‘know that I am God’.
Stillness is a discipline. All those things you think are so important that you just have to do them or think about them are competing with God in your life. They cannot be so important when they displace God. Nothing is worthy of more attention and focus in your life than God, Himself.
Faith is the first step.
When a bunch of things press on you and you are distracted by them it is because you have decided they have value or importance. You allow them to capture your thoughts and emotions and dictate your actions, because you think there is either something to lose if you don’t or gain if you do.
That means you have allowed those things to replace God in your life, since He is the most wonderful source of good things and most wonderful protection against bad things.
You have allowed those things, such as your need for approval, your need for security, your desire for personal gain, elevation of your relationships or comforts, or the like to be more important than letting God be God in your life.
It is time to realise that God is real and His will and His blessings are more important in your life than the things that distract you. That’s faith in action: trusting God to take care of things that you would otherwise feel compelled to worry about or attend to.
However you come at it, remember that God has spoken with the effect of a command in your life, that you become ‘still’ and come to full recognition of the amazing reality that God is God. Be Still and Know that God is God!!!