Psalm One Ministries
I woke yesterday to the sun shining on a river, creating a completely smooth surface. The brilliant Autumn colors of the trees formed a mirror image in the water. The resulting picture was so perfectly divided that you could almost flip the photograph without knowing the substance from the reflection. So many lessons from Jesus as I embraced this peaceful, holy, glorious experience.
There are times when my spirit is calm, surrendered, quietly reflecting Christ. But it takes very little to break the surface. One fish jumping, one lone kayaker, or the slightest gust of wind can disturb the smooth water with ripples and waves, leaving the image distorted, and eventually completely hidden. So it is with the Spirit in my life.
How can we reflect Jesus? How can we live out of the anchor of a still surface?
I'm not a monk. I don't live in a cloistered community. I don't live in the stillness. I live in the noise and craziness. My days are full and productive and sometimes chaotic. But I need to weave Sabbath and silence into my schedule. Because I need to live out of the stillness.
For thus the Lord GOD, the Holy One of Israel, has said,
This does not come naturally to 99% of us. I am slowly learning to integrate that life-giving peace into my day-to-day reality. In the stillness, God trains me to listen for His voice, to lean into His wisdom, to see the One who is Unseen.
So He said, "Go forth and stand on the mountain before the LORD." And behold, the LORD was passing by! And a great and strong wind was rending the mountains and breaking in pieces the rocks before the LORD; but the LORD was not in the wind. And after the wind an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire; and after the fire a sound of a gentle blowing. When Elijah heard it, he wrapped his face in his mantle and went out and stood in the entrance of the cave. And behold, a voice came to him and said, "What are you doing here, Elijah?" (1 Kings 19:11-13)
One of my favorite projects last year was speaking with a group of bi-vocational pastors on integrating Sabbath. Great group of men. At first they looked at me like, "Sounds great for you. But you don’t understand my life. I'm too busy for Sabbath." The more we discussed, the more we came to grips with the truth: Sabbath, solitude, and silence are not luxuries. There are necessities. Especially in ministry. Once we determined that, we wrestled with creative ways to build margin into our packed lives.
I need these times of seeing with clarity, of hearing God's voice, of being still and knowing He is God. This the invitation I extend to others through Psalm One. That serenity centers me when I return to the muchness and manyness of life. In these unhurried times of silence and solitude, I become refocused and refueled for the rat race.
"Cease striving and know that I am God;
That's what we do at the Refocus and Refuel Retreat (November 13-15). We sink into God's Word, we evaluate the state of our souls, and we consider new tools to keep our heart vibrant toward Christ. Then we spend wonderful, unhurried, uninterrupted time at Jesus' feet. God weaves His Word into our head, heart, and hands, so we can fully operate out of His agenda, strength, and wisdom. I love the Refocus and Refuel Retreat because I need the Refocus and Refuel Retreat. Otherwise, I can easily find myself running on empty.
How about you? How do you become still and know that He is God? How do you refocus? How do you refuel?
With His love and mine,