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The Value of Stillness

One of the frequently asked questions I bring to God is this: What do You want me to do? I try to listen, look for signs, seek counsel, read books, pray. What do You want me to do with my life? It’s a legitimate question, a good one even, but is it always the right one?

Sometimes, in our desire to follow God, we get lost in our walk. We feel the need to keep going, keep doing and keep asking that we miss the point of the journey. And that is simply, to be with Him. We can be so immersed in trying to please Him that we forget how to be with Him. To sit still enveloped in His love. Not doing, not deserving, not fretting, just resting, trusting, being loved like only He can love us.

If you’re like me, this is not easy. Striving is my default mode. I have to accomplish things in a day, even if it’s as trivial as sending an email, or as huge as delivering a project. I put a premium on efficiency and productivity, which in themselves are not bad. We are meant to be productive and to honor God with our work. But that is not all there is to us. In being a Martha, we should not forget that it is more valuable to be a Mary, to sit at the feet of Jesus and enjoy His presence.

I’ve listened to countless hour-long sermons by Pastor Rick Warren of the “Purpose-driven Life” fame (Saddleback Church), and in all of those, one message stuck with me: We were created to be loved by God. It is so simple, so revolutionary that it was hard to grasp at first (and occasionally, it still baffles me–being made to be loved). But it’s a mind-blowing truth we must accept if we are to live fully in a world that defines us based on what we do. Being with God is infinitely better for our souls than doing for Him. Because it is in being with Him that we are transformed.

P.S. These were some of my notes from “Sacred Rhythms: Arranging our Lives for Spiritual Transformation” by Ruth Barton. I’m only a few chapters in, but it’s a good read. Check it out. 🙂

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