One of the hardest lessons in life for someone like myself is learning how to be still, especially in the midst of a busy day in a busy family.
Despite the many pressures of family life, and the constant demands especially on mothers, and despite my apparent ADD, little by little the Lord has show me the value of being still.
In Psalm 46:10 it says, “Be still, and know that I am God.” For someone with an active mind and a lot of things to do, this can be one of the hardest passages of Scripture to fathom, yet it can also be one of the most rewarding.
In a busy life, with lots of pressures, it is tempting to get caught up in the urgent, rather than the important.
How to Be Still
One of the most important lessons I have learned is to program a time when I can be still and listen to the voice of God. I have found that if I just wander through my day, the things that are urgent constantly demand my attention and I am overwhelmed with all the things I need to do.
For me, the most important part of the day occurs before anybody else is awake, when I can sit and be still before the Lord at the very start of the day. I call this my quiet time, and it is a time when I can sit down with a nice cup of coffee and an open Bible ready to listen to whatever it is the Lord wants to speak about.
But here is the crazy thing… If I don’t take this time to sit and be still my entire day tends to get out of control. If I take the precious time that I seemingly don’t have to invest in being still before the Lord, the rest of the day makes a lot more sense!
Being Still with all the Pressures of Family
One of the unknowns in family life is the amount of time children are going to demand. Very often this is something you cannot control, and you find yourself at the mercy of the urgent.
Susanna Wesley, the mother of John and Charles Wesley who started the Methodist Church, was married to a preacher and had 19 children, 10 of whom died. If anybody knew anything about the demands of family life, it was her.
One of her children was crippled, and another could not talk until he was nearly 6 years old. Her husband could not manage money well, so that was no money for food and debt plague the family.
Her husband was once thrown into prison for debt, their home was burnt down twice and they lost everything they owned. Someone slit their cow’s udders so they wouldn’t have milk, killed their dog and burned their flax field.
However, Susanna had promised the Lord that for every hour she spent in entertainment she would give him an hour in prayer and Bible study. But in such a busy household, raising so many children, it was nearly impossible to find time for anything!
That was when she told her children about her prayer apron. They were instructed that, whenever they saw the apron over her head, that that meant she was praying and could not be disturbed. She prayed for her children every day, no matter how busy her day became.
Taking Time Out to Be Still
No matter how difficult, complicated and demanding your family life may become, and no matter the financial, work or relationship pressures you face, your best course of action is to take time out and be still before the Lord.
You may not flip and apron over your head, but even 15 or 20 minutes of a morning can set the course of your day on a different track. I guarantee you that if you invest even a small amount of time into being still before the Lord, the rewards will be overwhelming.
So parents, however complicated your day may become, I challenge you to take time to be with the Lord, being still before him and listening and learning from his word every day. Over time, the little that you invest will grow to give you an abundant return.
Take time every day to be still and know that He is God!