Summary: There is so much noise, we can’t hear God.
Text: Psalm 46:1-11
Title: Be Still, and Know I am God
Recommended Music: “Be Still My Soul”
Words: Katharina Amalia Dorothea von Schlegel, 1752 (Stille, meine Wille, dein Jesus hilft siegen); translated from German to English by Jane Laurie Borthwick in Hymns from the Land of Luther, 1855. Music: "Finlandia," Jean Sibelius, 1899
Have you noticed the amount of noise in our lives? There are a million and one things vying for our attention; television, radio, telephones, email, billboards, ads in magazines all seem to be shouting at us, demanding our attention. “Buy this!” “Shop here!” “MUST SEE TV!” Everything seems to be a demand.
Psalm 46:1 tells us that God [is] our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. A refuge. When you think of a refuge you think of a quite place, a safe haven from the noise and the battle. He is our strength, our power, the One from whom we derive the will to go on.
“Therefore we will not fear”. Fear is useless. Fear is indicative of a lack of faith in God. How can you feel fear if you are in a safe haven? A refuge?
The fear we feel today has less to do with a physical enemy surrounding our town and bringing siege to it with battering rams and catapults, but the anomalous fear of economic collapse; that someone is getting ahead of us at our expense. That we are missing out on something so important that we will never catch up to the rest of society unless we have that one thing. We fear the other; that the other person is taking what is ours, and usurping our prerogatives. This is (whether we admit it our not) is the basis for our unease.
If only we could see the truth. We have nothing to fear if we rely on God. He is our collective strength and He allocated His power to all His children equally. We are all assured of His very present help in our trouble.
To calm our fears the Lord gives us, in Psalm 46:10 a simple command. “Be still, and know that I am God.” Oh how wonderful that phrase. He uses the same command over and over in the Bible. In Psalm 4:4 He tells us to “Stand in awe, and sin not: commune with your own heart upon your bed, and be still.” Commune with your own heart, listen to yourself … listen to the voice of God within you as He guides you. Be Still. This command works. Jesus used it on the storm in Mark 4:39 when he stood up in the boat and said to the sea, “Peace, be still.” And when He did there was a great calm. Think of the power in that command. A raging storm was brought to a halt and the sea calmed to nothingness in an instant. Had Jesus been working for theatrical effect he could have shouted “MIGHTY WINDS, I COMMAND THEE TO CEASE! RAGING WATER, CALM YOURSELF AND DO NOT TROUBLE ME!” But instead He simply said, “Be still” and it was enough. It can be enough in your life as well. The Lord is with us today, and gives us the same command. And as it worked on the storm, it will work on your life.
Meditation has fallen out of style in the West since the Transcendental Meditation fad of the 1960’s, but the Christian is encouraged to meditate. Webster defines meditate as “to focus one’s thoughts on: reflect on or ponder over” and that is just what we should do. Focus on, and reflect on God. Focus on God, and that will take the focus away from your fear.
Take time to get away from the noise and shouts of daily life. Even if only for five minutes during your lunch break, stop. Listen and commune with your own heart. Hear the voice of our Lord as He says, “Know I am God”.
May the Peace, Joy and Love of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all, amen.