My son is every bit of six years old. He runs through the house at full speed, laughs so hard he can’t hear anything and has to do everything himself. There are many times when I’m trying to give him instructions, but he keeps going. I yell his name to get his attention, but he keeps going. I’ve tried with everything in me to get him to hear me, but often I get no response while he’s moving around. It’s not until I have to get up, go over to him and get in his space that he hears me or realizes I’m trying to give him instruction.
I know he probably gets that from me, and as I think about it, I wonder how often that describes me today. How often is God trying to get my attention, screaming my name, but I can’t hear Him because of my busyness? I’ve got a lost of things to do, my mind is racing with ideas of what’s next and I’m halfway looking where I’m going. I don’t stop until God gets in my space and says, “Hey! I’m trying to talk to you. I’ve been trying to get your attention, but you won’t stop and listen.”
In those moments, I wonder how long He had been trying to get my attention. I have to think back, replay the last little bit and see all the ways He was trying to get my attention. I then seek forgiveness for being to busy to hear Him and renew my commitment to slow down. That’s when I’m reminded of Psalm 46:10. It says, “Be still, and know that I am God!” (NLT) I think the Psalmist was a lot like me and that was his message from God that goes out to all of us who run full speed all the time.
I’ve learned that God cares less about my busyness and more about my ability to stop and listen. I’m learning from my son that when I’m running around, I can’t hear what’s being said. I can’t focus on what I’m supposed to. How many mishaps could have been prevented? How many blessings have I missed out on because I was too busy to hear Him? If you’re like me, let me encourage you to take time to stop today and listen. Chances are that God is calling your name and is trying to get your attention.
I’ve always heard that if you’re not going forward, you’re going backwards. Sometimes it’s all we can do to put one foot in front of the other. When your life has been flipped upside down, you become directionally challenged. What seems like the right direction may not be right. It’s tough to know which way forward is in those moments. You may feel like you’re drowning and you can’t stay still, so you move in the direction you hope is forward just so you can leave the place where you are.
I remember taking swimming lessons as a kid. They warned us that under water, you can lose your sense of direction. In those moments it’s easy to panic, and to start swimming thinking you’re moving closer to air, when in reality, you’re going further down. Going the wrong direction can cost you more than time. To help, they taught us a simple rule to help determine the right way to swim. Be still. When you quit fighting and are still, your body will naturally float to the top. Once you’re moving in that direction, swim with all your might.
The same thing is true for us spiritually. When were lost and confused as to which way is forward, be still. You’ve heard Psalm 46:10 as, “Be still and know that I am God,” but I like the Good News Translation even better. It says, “’Stop fighting,’ He says, ‘and know that I am God.’” When you’re under water and you’re drowning, it’s natural to fight, but God says, “Stop fighting. Be still.” When we do that, not only will we know He is God, but we will find the way forward. Quit panicking trying to get out of this phase and be still. When God sends you in the right direction, go forward with all your might.