Seasons and Stillness

Unless the Lord builds the house, the builders labor in vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city, the guards stand watch in vain. In vain you rise early and stay up late, toiling for food to eat—for he grants sleep to those he loves.

(Psalm 127:1-2 NIV)

Bad things happen to people. Bad, bad things. Yet we must rise above our circumstances. There is a difference in how we should rise above circumstances as Christians, in which we have accepted the gift of having a relationship with Christ and eternal life in Him. That difference is security. God gives us security. Through Him, we are not lost, and we have hope.

We might find ourselves in seasons of despair–times in which there seems to be no answer, deep confusion, grief, and heartbreak–completely and utterly overwhelming times. If there’s anything I have been reminded of in these seasons, it’s that I am not in control. I have been in situations in which there is nothing I can do but let go. I cannot change things whatsoever, which is uncomfortable for someone like me who likes certainty. I like to know where things are heading. I like comfortability. I like peace. So, when things take an unexpected turn, it’s unsettling.

In times like these, I realize how important it is to be still.

Do not rush things. A lot of times, we like to take matters into our own hands and our solution eventually falls apart. However, we are called to wait on the Lord. We are called to do this simply because He is the only One that can make things work in the way that is best. Even when we make mistakes, He is the One that can fix them. We must be still because it allows God to do what He needs to do. Which to me, sounds amazing that we serve a God who loves us enough to work every detail in our lives in our favor. There’s so much peace in that.

These verses in Psalm 127 explains that anything that is done in haste and that is not of God is done in vain. Whatever “house” we are trying to build–a better financial or health situation, a relationship, a dream–let God build it. Let Him lay the foundation and finish the job. This does not mean to not work towards things. In fact, we should. God honors diligence. However, we can work as hard as we want in order to get something, but if God is not in it, it will crumble. This is simply because we are not God–we are human. We don’t know the future. I think it makes sense to let the One who knows the future handle the future.

In the meanwhile, we can be restored in Him. The Psalm continues to say that the Lord grants us sleep. I believe these times of sleep–of stillness–are purposeful times.

We can use these times to build our faith and to learn to trust Him. It’s sad that even after God has delivered us in the past, we can still doubt His ability to do it again. I encourage you to put an end to this pattern. Use this time to turn your heart around. Give everything to Him. Not just the big things. Even the smallest things you’re still holding onto. Give it all to Him and allow yourself to have freedom. God understands that we are small. We must understand how BIG He is.

We must take joy in stillness, allowing God to work in our hearts while He works in our lives.

Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!

(Psalm 46:10 ESV)