Ps 19:14 – Let the sayings of my mouth, And the meditation of my heart, Be for a pleasing thing before Thee, O Jehovah, my rock, and my redeemer! (YLT)
What are the sayings of our mouth?
Expressions that expose what is in our hearts, revealing what we perceive to be truth and wisdom and life.
What is the meditation of our heart?
To earnestly, deeply think, and murmur with tenderness, evoking a strong emotional response.
When the meditation of our heart is pleasing to God…
Jer 31:25 – For I [Jehovah] will satisfy the weary soul, and every languishing soul I will replenish.” (ESV)
Are you familiar with this soul deep satisfaction?
I began to get a taste of it when I moved from trying to make myself acceptable and good through good deeds and right belief to simply taking God at his word.
A new way of relating to God.
John 17:3 – And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent. (ESV)
This is Life…Knowing the Lord God!
How does one go about getting to know the only true God and Jesus Christ?
“Be still, and know that I am God.” Ps 46:10
What an unusual and difficult task for one conditioned to thinking, planning, and working to make myself good.
It’s a paradox.
It’s a process of letting go in order to rediscover life that was given up through ignorance and neglect.
It’s a process of opposing, contending, striving in order to give up, renounce, abandon self-interest that is at the root of forfeiting life.
It’s a process of ceasing, stopping, to be destroyed, dying in order to be redeemed.
It’s a process of abandoning, neglecting in order to be healed and made whole.
Be still. A state of being. Am. Is. Stay, remain as in was, were.
To mend. By stitching. To cure. Cause to heal. Repair thoroughly. Make whole.
Be still. A paradox. Losing life to find Life. How?
Rom 9:21-25 – Has the potter no right over the clay, to make out of the same lump one vessel for honored use and another for dishonorable use? What if God, desiring to show his wrath and to make known his power, has endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction, in order to make known the riches of his glory for vessels of mercy, which he has prepared beforehand for glory— even us whom he has called, not from the Jews only but also from the Gentiles? (ESV)
In this one body of mine is both a vessel of wrath and a vessel of mercy. As I let go of one, I discover the other. As the Lord God destroys the vessel of wrath, he reveals who I truly am.
Be still. A paradox. Life by grace.
Eph 2:4-7 – But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ— by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. (ESV)
God. Being rich in mercy. God. Loved us with great love. God. Kind toward us in Christ Jesus. We were dead, having forfeited life through ignorance and neglect. He made us alive together with Christ. By grace.
I’ve discovered a Japanese art form, kintsukuroi, which I think provides a visual of the process of being still and knowing God; the process of being destroyed by grace and made alive together with Christ by grace. Kintsukuroi means golden joinery or repair with gold (grace). Rather than throwing broken pottery (forfeited life) away as useless, rather than repairing by concealing and hiding the patches, kintsukuroi transforms broken pottery into a new life as beautiful art, by enhancing the break lines with gold (grace, mercy, kindness). Kintsukuroi treats breakage and repair as part of the object’s unique story, rather than something to disguise or abandon.
Be still, and
Be still, then
Be still, consequently
Know, not in the sense of accumulating facts and figures, receiving answers about what to do to get a good life, but know as in relationship. Know as in Being. Consciousness, discernment, recognition, acquaintance, familiar friend, perceive, presence, fellowship.
Ps 46:10 – “Be still, and know that I am God…” (ESV)
Richard Rohr captures this “be still, and know” experience well in this quote from his book, Just This:
“The supreme work of spirituality, which makes presence possible, is keeping the heart space open (which is the result of conscious love), keeping in a “right mind” (which is the work of contemplation or meditation), and keeping the body alive with contentment and without attachment to its past woundings (which is often the work of healing). In that state, you are neither resisting nor clinging, and you can experience something genuinely new.”
Why am I writing this blog?
I have gotten a small taste of the richness of God’s mercy by learning to be still and knowing that God is God. God is life. He satisfies the longing of the weary soul.
I invite you to join me in knowing the God who is rich in mercy, who loves us with a great love, who beckons us to know him as he knows us. I encourage you to be still. Discover Life. Abundant Life.
May mercy, peace and love be multiplied to you!