Ready to 'join up'

Be still, and know that I am God! I will be honored by every nation. I will be honored throughout the world. (Psalm 46:10)

I have a hard time being 'still'. It is as though there has to be some 'activity' going on, even if it is thought. I spend a good deal of time thinking on things, then I usually take action after learning what I can from thinking on the subject. I think about what is for dinner, plan a menu in my head, and then execute the preparation of the meal. I think on my next woodworking project, plan the tools I will use, bits and blades needed, any finishes I will utilize, and the types of woods I will incorporate into it. Then I execute the steps to see what I envisioned created. It is never wrong to just 'be still' - for in the stillness, we often 'hear' much clearer and 'plan' much better than we do without all that thought!

To 'be still', one might imagine we need to cease all movement, but there can be movement in stillness. I have observed a creek so still that you'd think there was no movement at all, yet the water is stagnant, nor is it really 'still' - it is just moving at a very steady, but 'still' pace. Based on this observation, I might have believed being 'still' meant there was nothing to be heard, but even in the 'stillness' of that little creek, there were things to be heard. Birds sang from the treetops, wind gently moved the leaves above, and an occasional cricket chirp could be heard. Not all 'stillness' means absolute silence - it just may mean we get 'silent' enough to really listen and observe.

I have been watching how horses are tamed. It is amazing to me to see the purpose in making them 'move' around the corral time and time again until they are ready to 'join up'. Maybe being 'still' means we stop resisting. We lay down our reluctance, give up on our 'wild plans', and come close enough to the one who wants that relationship with us. The horse eventually does this - settling down, realizing they can trust the person in the corral with them, and they just 'settle'. Reluctance means we are not willing to be obedient to God's plan yet, so we might just resist 'settling down' into the stillness he asks for because we aren't quite ready to 'join up' with him. 

When we finally get 'still enough' to listen and observe, chances are we will be convicted of any place in our lives where we are a little too 'reluctant' to move into obedience to what God desires for us. This is the moment for action - conviction leading to confession and confession leading to repentance. We lay down our 'wild ways' and 'incessant circling' in order to settle into a trusting relationship with Jesus. The moment of 'joining up' comes when the horse 'stills' and just stands near the one in the corral with him. We cannot 'join up' until we trust fully the one who is asking us to come near to him. How about you? Have you been circling the corral of obedience in your life? Are you finally ready to 'join up'? Is it time to just 'be still' and know that he is God? Just askin!

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