Encouragement

Be Still

Quarantine life has undoubtedly forced many of us to pump our breaks and slow down in the way we move through everyday life. For some, slowing down and staying home may mean spending more quality time with loved ones, creating new habits, getting much needed rest or even starting a new hobby. On the other hand there are others who feel like they’re holding their breath because they’ve lost their job or closed a business.

I recently heard Oprah say, “quarantine has forced us inside so we can look inward.” I couldn’t agree with her more. Looking inward requires a stillness in your mind, body and spirit. Our attention is divided among so many distractions on a regular basis. Personally I’ve had several days of reevaluating my priorities and shifting my focus from the insignificant things of this life, that often times cause me grief, to the things that really matter.

If life before Covid-19 was too fast-paced and you wanted to slow down but just couldn’t make the time to be still, now is your opportunity. What I’ve discovered over the years is that my spiritual foundation became so much more fortified when I faced times of hardship and isolation. It was during the most humbling time of my life when resources and opportunities were scarce and I felt completely isolated and hidden from the world that my relationship with God truly flourished. Prior to falling on hard times I didn’t have a reason to desperately seek God because I depended on my own strength and abilities, I’ll even admit I was prideful and dependent on myself. Sure I would pray on a daily basis but I wasn’t truly going after His heart with my whole heart. I was always in a hurry so I kept the conversations on a surface level. When we’re too busy to spend quality time with God He knows how to get our attention.

Throughout my days of feeling hidden from the world I thought God was silent and even absent. I was so eager for an answer and a breakthrough that I relentlessly searched for Him day in and day out. In the morning, I began to wake up early to pray just to hear from Him and receive a sign. My idea of prayer at the time was more like begging in a pool of tears, I wanted to read the Bible but just didn’t know where to begin and mediation well let’s just say that turned into me gazing off into an abyss of anxiety. After some time when God provided answers to some of my prayers, I realized He wasn’t absent. I came across the scripture “Be still and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10) the revelation this brought my soul was so profound! Being still supersedes the notion of physical stillness, it means being still in a mental and spiritual sense. You see, the voice of fear and anxiety are so loud that it can distract us from hearing the reassuring gentle voice of God. I was in a constant state of worrying because of the uncertainty of the future that I couldn’t hear and see God’s promises for my life. It was time for a change, it was time for me to intentionally quiet my thoughts and relax.

So If a replay of negative thoughts have infiltrated your mind and you feel like a hostage to fear and anxiety I want you to know that Christ can set you free. In a world where the unknown causes doubt, rest in the confidence that God is all knowing and His plans to prosper you and give you hope and a future has not been canceled.

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