“Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10. A familiar verse. A simple verse. Yet what does it actually mean, and how do we put it into practice? Would you join me in a closer look at the psalm?
“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” When my day doesn’t go as planned, when a friend hurts me, when infertility continues, when I lose my job, when the test results are bad, when a loved one dies, whatever the trouble, God is my help. My refuge. My strength. That means I don’t try to be strong and do it alone. No, I turn to Him. Hide in Him. Look to Him. And He is very present.
“Therefore we will not fear.” No fear. But my trouble is so big, surely I have a right to be afraid? Keep reading. We will not fear “even though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; though its waters roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with its swelling.” That sounds like pretty big trouble to me. Yet, no need to fear.
“There is a river whose streams shall make glad the city of God, the holy place of the tabernacle of the Most High.” I am His “tabernacle”, His dwelling place. He’s promised that streams of living will flow out of me. His joy is my strength. No matter the trouble, His promises remain.
“God is in the midst of her, she shall not be moved.” When it seems like everything is coming against you, when you feel like you’ve lost your footing and you don’t know if you’ll make it, cling to this promise. God is with you. Not just with you. Within you. You shall not be moved.
“God shall help her, just at the break of dawn.” The night seems long. So incredibly long. And yet His timing is perfect. Never early, never late.
“The nations raged, the kingdoms were moved; He uttered His voice, the earth melted.” In national affairs, when it seems like not just your personal life but the whole world is in deep trouble, He is sovereign. He holds complete power. He utters His voice and the earth melts. Remember how the story ends, my sisters. Victoriously. We’ll be with Him forever.
“The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge.” The Lord of hosts. The God with armies of angels. The God who has been faithful for all of time, and faithful to individuals. He is with us. He is our refuge.
“Come, behold the works of the Lord.” Remember. Read. Study. What has God done in your life? In those around you? In history? In His word? This is the God “who has made desolations in the earth. He makes wars cease to the end of the earth; He breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two; He burns the chariot in the fire.” And when you remember who your God is, then:
“Be still, and know that I am God.” If this is your God, then what other response could there be? Be still. There’s no need to be frantic, to panic, to worry, to “try to fix it”, to obsess over it, to run ahead blindly. No, be still. And know that I am God. Who is God? The God you just read about earlier in the psalm.
And then remember that this God, He has said “I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!”. It may feel like chaos is reigning, like everything is spinning out of control, and you wonder where God is. Yet this is His promise. He will be exalted in all the earth. He is sovereign right here, right now, and a glorious ending awaits all who trust in Him.
“The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge.” What more could we ask? What more do we need to know?
Dear sister, I don’t know what you’re going through. But I do know the answer. “Be still, and know that I am God.”