“Be still, and know that I am God.
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth!”
The first line in the verse says it all with just a few short words: “Be still, and know that I am God.” It feels like God is reminding us all: Hey, slow yourself down and listen. I am the one and only God.
It is interesting that there is a comma between the word “still” and the word “and.” Grammarians will tell you that you do not typically need a comma before the word “and,” except when there are two independent clauses. Also, a comma is used to tell a reader to just stop. It is as if God wants to remind us to completely stop and to rest in the Spirit.
In a full stop with God, perhaps we may finally rest and find identity in our Lord. When I think of stopping and resting with God or through God’s word, I think of meditation. To stop and think on God’s word is meditation. I often break this verse down and meditate on each word. I find it especially helpful whenever I am worried or alone.
It is here that the words from an ancient time can remind us all to rest and to know our God. Within such rest, may we find community in the divine. To mediate with God gives rise to hearing and knowing a loving and eternal God. Timeless and enduring, like the waves that return to the shore, or the rocking of a child, there is that gentle return. When I hear, “Be still, and know that I am God,” I also hear, You are loved; You are loved; You are loved.
By Barbara Carlson
For Pondering & Prayer
Following Psalm 46:10, I sometimes use a form of meditation that is known as lectio divina. This spiritual practice is the process of reading scripture, meditating on a word or words and contemplating its meaning. Often the scripture is broken down word by word as part of the meditation. With this verse, I often read each line and then gradually drop off the word at the end, so that I meditate on the shortened phrase. My mediation goes like this:
Be still, and know that I am God. Be still, and know that I AM. Be still, and know.... Be still, and… Be still. Be.
What scriptures do you meditate on? Which capture your heart? How does your meditation with God bring you to a deeper knowing of God’s love?
Prayer: Loving God, You are the great I AM, who calls us just to “Be still” and listen…. In the silence of our hearts, let us know you. In the silence of our hearts, let us know your loving grace. It surrounds us always and calls us just to be with you. Amen.