Parson to Person: Be still and know
This past weekend, I celebrated my 33rd birthday and my 10-year college reunion at Goshen College. I am still pondering the ways in which 33 years of life and a decade since college graduation has rushed by.
On my drive back to Iowa, I visited friends who recently had a baby and live in Chicago. I was already running late and then I came to a stop on the highway -- brake lights for as long as I could see ahead of me. As I inched along at what seemed like a snail's pace, I watched the people around me and their varied responses to slow-moving traffic. With determined brows, some people tried to avoid delay by dangerously weaving in and out of lanes. With frustrated eye rolls, some people slid up as close as possible to the bumper in front of them. With angry glares, some people pressed as hard as they could against their loud horns. With complacent stares, some people busied themselves with other tasks like talking on cell phones, eating or reading.
Personally, I turned up the Christian radio station and jammed out to praise music in order to calm my anxious nerves because I really do not like traffic jams with inner-city drivers.
Eventually, I patiently made the drive through the city to the suburbs. That evening, I held a beautiful, sleeping baby in my arms. Looking into her peaceful face, I remembered the new blessings that fill our lives with wonder and amazement.
How often in our life journeys do we become so busy that we rush through every moment of life? Do we ever slow down or stop long enough to observe what God is really doing around us? How do we respond when life takes an unexpected delay from our well-marked plans? Perhaps, right now, we may face life's challenges with determination, frustration, anger, complacency or joy. We may feel overwhelmed by the pressures, anxieties, uncertainties and struggles that surround us. We may feel jammed into places with people in situations where we don't want to be. The roads of this life may seem like a chaotic mess.
In Psalm 46, the song writer states, "God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in time of trouble." As the psalm continues, it becomes clear that no matter what is happening -- natural or people-created disasters -- God was and is and always will be in control. In other words, our life journeys definitely contain those moments where everything may seem like it is falling apart. But, even in those moments, God is with us and is holding everything together in His hand. In the midst of immense chaos, the song writer proclaims these words from God, "Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations. I will be exalted in the earth."
So, in the midst of whatever may be happening in your life journey today, take a moment to truly be still and remember who God is and whose got your life in His almighty hands.
Take a deep breath and rest in God's loving arms. God will never let you go. God has a plan for your life far greater than you could ever see or imagine. God will show you new blessings and you will be amazed.