Practicing stillness before the Lord may be one of the hardest disciplines to master. One thing that seems to make us uncomfortable in prayer, especially in a corporate prayer setting, are times of stillness and quietness before the Lord. Somehow, we feel the need to do something or say something. Yet prayer is a two way communication, not a one way dialogue. If we neglect giving God an opportunity to speak, how are we to receive instruction, direction or correction?
In a Father / child relationship, the burden of communication falls on the Father, the burden of listening, being attentive, and doing what He says falls on the child. We have a responsibility as sons and daughters of God to take time to listen in silence, purposely giving time to have a hearing ear.
Ecclesiastes 3:1 and 7 To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven:
7 A time to tear, And a time to sew; A time to keep silence, And a time to speak;
Waiting in silent expectation before God is a powerful, fruitful endeavor. Quiet meditation on who He is and His written word is an amazing exercise of our faith that is pleasing to the Lord. Clearing our head of any thought and listening to what the Spirit is saying may be more pleasing still.
Psalm 23:2-3 He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.
The Lord is always leading us to a place of green pastures and still waters. A place of refreshing and restoration. It is a place we find direction and discernment from the Holy Spirit.
Psalm 46:10 Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.
It is in stillness that God is known. Reading and studying God’s word helps us to know about God, but spending time in His presence is what we need to actually know Him intimately. God is raising us up to live life from the overflow of His indwelling presence, rather than merely living by the principles in His written word. We desperately need both.
“In our stillness before Him, He prepares us to host His presence.”
Psalm 62:1 Truly my soul silently waits for God; From Him comes my salvation.
Psalm 62:5-6 My soul, wait silently for God alone, For my expectation is from Him. 6 He only is my rock and my salvation; He is my defense; I shall not be moved.
“Silently waiting on God anchors our soul.”
When we are pressed on every side with problems, trials, and attacks of the enemy, silent waiting on God gives us strength to stand in faith. It reinforces our trust in His mercies and His power to deliver us out of all our troubles. It purifies our motives and gives us a proper perspective.
Isaiah 30:15 For thus says the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel: “In returning and rest you shall be saved; In quietness and confidence shall be your strength.” But you would not,
The Lord is speaking a strong word of correction through the prophet Isaiah. The Lord rebuked His people for trusting in Egypt for strength and salvation instead of Him. Isaiah said by the word of the Lord that in returning and rest they would be saved and in quietness and confidence they would be strengthened, but they refused to do it. This was recorded so we could learn from their mistakes.
Quietness and stillness should be practiced individually and corporately to keep us from trusting in the world and its systems. How many gatherings have we seen where we corporately wait in silence before the Lord?
We live in an age of distractions and constant movement. It is vitally important that we practice stillness before the Lord to help us cut through the clamor and chaos of our generation. Stillness is the frequency of God. It positions our hearts to hear the still small voice of the Spirit.
How much of our prayer life is spent in stillness?
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