He will quiet you with his love
We arrived in the mid-morning sun. Dumped the bags, pulled on the boots and set walking; destination: sea. We walked and talked, talked and walked, soft Dorset rock crunching dusty beneath our feet, wheat blowing beside us and a wide open sky above us. I felt like the further we walked, the more we climbed (up and up and up!); everything got stiller, quieter. How could it only be a few hours since we left London and her noisy flight paths?
And as we walked, hit the blue expanse of sea, we talked less and breathed it in deep.
Gentle. Quiet. We agreed, our souls were being stilled.
We come home 24 hours later, my friend and I, to busy lives, to broken hearts and a drowning world. To a clamour and a rage for attention – I’m sure I’m not alone. We all feel it. How we plunge headlong after a long summer into the dust and rage of this whole unholy world. How do we make our voice heard? How do we fight it? How do we live different to make a difference?
How do we stay stilled when we are moved every day by the battle for our attention, for our minds, for our allegiance? In the midst of the battle, how do we find the still that our souls so desperately need?
The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.
Let him quiet you with his love.
Would that we would be those who would still and listen.
I heard wisdom recently; that in the middle of the battle and the rage, for us to lie down before God is to stand up to the enemy. To lay down our agenda and our worries and all the ways we’ve built strong fortresses to keep us safe. To lay down all the ways that scream we don’t really trust Him.
And instead to lay down quiet. To know we’re loved. To know He’s here, at the end of the summer, in the middle of your battle, at the beginning of a new season. This love that brings quiet and peace, this is love that whispers louder than all the flight paths, breaks through the traffic of oncoming expectation and busyness. This is love given for you by a lamb who went quiet to a cross, who laid himself down in order to defeat the ultimate enemy … And won.
And this lying down we are called to is not giving up but giving in, trusting in His grace, His ways that aren’t our ways and thoughts that aren’t our thoughts. This quieting of our souls enables us to hear His heartbeat loud, beat loud for the poor and the abandoned, the outsider and the lonely, the lost and the suffering. It’s how we know more of Jesus, how we become more like Jesus, this stilling of our souls, this invitation to hear the Father sing over us so that we might join in the song and sing it over a world ,a city and a community so deeply in need.
Ellie Hughes (30 August 2017)
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