There is always so much to do. Meals to be made, kids to shuttle, meetings to attend, calls to make, errands to run, a house to be cleaned. So much to do and such little time. We feel guilty for taking time for ourselves. We feel like reading a book or sitting and enjoying a cup of coffee is "bad" or wrong. The guilt piles up and we beat ourselves up for not doing all of the things that are on our to do list that never ends or gets shorter, it just keeps growing. Then, something causes us to reevaluate our priorities. That something might be a diagnosis. It might be a job offer. Maybe you lost your job. Or a loved one. It can even be something as simple as a conversation that grips you and makes you realize that you need to slow down. For me, there have been several times that I have had to realize that being still is what I need to do. I like to be busy, especially when I'm doing fun things.
We are all called to slow down. In the stillness is where we hear God's voice. It's where He speaks to us. When we are so busy and rushing everywhere, we can't hear from God. That's when the doubt creeps in, the constant confusion swirls around us.
As I study God's word, the words that consistently stand out and that rattle around in my head are, "Peace, be still." These are the words that Jesus used when He commanded the waves to stop. As I dig into this passage and look at what was happening several things stand out to me. First of all, Jesus was taking some time to be with His disciples. He needed to get away from the multitude to rest and to be with those that were closest to Him. He was resting, just as His father did on the seventh day of Creation. Another thing that stands out to me is that Jesus is asleep while this tumultuous windstorm is ravaging his little boat. His boat is being filled with water, the disciples are afraid that they are going to sink and Jesus is sleeping! Finally, there's Jesus. He wakes up, maybe He rubs the sleep out of his eyes and then He tells the wind and sea to be still. However, the passage doesn't end there. He then looks the the disciples and asks them, "Why are you so fearful? How is it that you have no faith." Then we have the disciples. After all that they have seen and experienced they are still fearful and still questioning who Jesus was. They were following this great teacher, Jesus was even explaining things to them but they were letting their circumstances lead them. The busyness, the multitudes, the waves and storms of life were crashing all over them and they didn't know what to do or believe. I have to question, am I more like Jesus or more like the disciples? Am I letting the storms of life beat me up or am I taking the time to rest and let Jesus calm my storms? Am I creating my own storms that overwhelm me instead of letting the stillness of God wash over me?
When I am still, I am given peace. As we see in this passage, those two go together. Are we being obedient? May this week help us to slow down, be still, and live out our faith in Jesus.