You have believed, you have prayed, you have gotten wise counsel, you have checked that your prayer is consistent with Scripture and you have peace about the final outcome, yet nothing is happening. There are no small or large changes, everything seems to be still (almost to a stop) and then you wonder is this really the right thing? Is this thing that you have been praying for really going to happen or is it just another prayer on the long list of prayers that did not get answered or worse got answered in a manner opposite from how you prayed.
So to distract yourself from the agonizing question, you become immersed in a project, in work, in church, or in a relationship. While the distraction works for a while, the underlying question looms and pops up in weird places like while driving, taking a shower, or sleeping. So you pray again but still no answer. You remind yourself of all of the blessings God has given you and give thanks but still no answer. You pray for others and take care of those He has entrusted into your care but still no answer. You go to the altar and pour your heart out to God for an answer but still no answer. You read Scripture and fast but still no answer. So now what?
He leads you beside still waters. Sometimes the reason for the wait to a prayer is because whatever is about to happen will require all of your strength, so by not having an answer right away, your strength is being stored up for whatever is to come. A common mistake is thinking that having an answer right away reduces your stress, but what if it really will not, what if this time of stillness is really God’s way of preparing you for an even greater stress. Psalms 23:2 says that He directs our paths to stillness; your objective is to recognize the stillness and be thankful for it instead of wishing it away.
Be still and know that He is God. Psalms 46:10 is a good reminder of the importance of remaining still and recognizing that His is God and He will be honored everywhere. During your period of stillness, spend time just worshiping His awesomeness, remember this maybe God’s way of restoring your strength. But if you spend this time worrying instead of worshiping, your strength will not be as great and may in fact be lessened. Trust that His timing is perfect and enjoy being still.
Be still and wait patiently for Him to act. Have you ever prayed for patience? Have you ever wanted to be a more patience person? Well, patience comes with practice. How many times have you wanted others to demonstrate patience with you or asked others to have patience? Here is your big chance to model patience for those around you or more importantly to model patience for yourself. If you are not willing to model patience, how can you ask others to do the same? Be still and wait patiently Psalms 37:7 commands.
In the meantime, keep believing, keep praying, keep seeking counsel, and keep studying the Scripture and God’s peace will be with you even during periods of stillness. Come to love the stillness instead of the hectic, the quiet instead of the noisy and the peace instead of fighting and you will be blessed.
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