Over the past couple of weeks, I've had conversations with two individuals in which the idea of stillness has been discussed. We talked about it in the context of being still when you are unsure of your next step, and in the context of being still when directed by the Holy Spirit.
A common definition for stillness is “the absence of movement or sound.” This definition reminds me of my childhood and when my brother and I would dare each other to be still for a period of time. Usually the dare was for a short period of time, but inevitably one of us would move.
Being still runs contrary to our human nature, which is why we find it so difficult to accomplish. This is probably never truer than now, in this ultra-busy culture, where every minute of our time is filled to capacity.
It takes much more human effort to be still than not, and yet God frequently admonishes Christians to be still. As humans, we want to feel as if we are doing something to move our lives forward, and being still is often viewed as the worst thing that a person can do.
There are numerous benefits for Christians being still:
1. It is during those periods that we are able to most clearly determine God’s direction for our lives, through meditation and prayer
Numbers 9:8 “And Moses said unto them, Stand still, and I will hear what the LORD will command concerning you.”
2. It is during those periods that we allow God to have the space to take action
Exodus 14:13 “And Moses said unto the people, Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation of the LORD, which he will shew to you to day: for the Egyptians whom ye have seen to day, ye shall see them again no more for ever.”
3. There is no confusion concerning who took action, the Christian or God.
Exodus 14:14 “The Lord shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace.”
When you are unsure of your next steps – be still and wait for direction from God. When the Holy Spirit directs you to be still – be still.
Glory to God for All That He Has Done
Blessings – Janice
I recently had reason to think about “pride” – from what it is, to what role or place it has or does not have in the Christian’s life.
The general definition for pride is “a feeling or deep pleasure or satisfaction derived from one's own achievements, the achievements of those with whom one is closely associated, or from qualities or possessions that are widely admired.” The general definition for achievement is “a thing done successfully, typically by effort, courage, or skill.” So when we put these two definitions together we get the following:
A deep pleasure or satisfaction derived from something done successfully by one’s own “…effort, courage or skill.”
I think the key to this is that it is tied to the feeling/belief that whatever was accomplished was done so because of your or someone else’s effort. A Christian can quickly see the issue with pride, because it is based on the person. A Christian understands that nothing is achieved without God!
John 15:5 reminds us that we can do nothing without God - “I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.”
Pride holds so many pitfalls and dangers for the Christian, and God provides many warnings and describes the consequences of pride.
God’s view on pride:
Proverbs 11:2 - "When pride cometh, then cometh shame: but with the lowly is wisdom."
Proverbs 26:12 - "Seest thou a man wise in his own conceit? there is more hope of a fool than of him."
The consequences of pride:
Proverbs 16:5 - "Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the Lord: though hand join in hand, he shall not be unpunished."
I John 2:16 - "For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world."
Pride is a dangerous thing in a Christian’s life, because it separates you from God, from His blessings and from being able to do His will.
It can be a struggle to resist being prideful, because the world encourages you to think that what you have achieved, you did so by your own efforts and skills. While it can be a struggle, it is one that must be won. If you are struggling with pride, it is important to identify your condition, and then be prayerful to God that He help you root out the pride, and to humble yourself before Him.
Glory To God for All That He Has Done
Blessings - Janice
Life Transitions Christian Coaching
Associate Certified Coach, ICF