Two words that I have heard my entire life are be still. As a child with way too much energy and a father with very little patience, those words decorated the air in my youth. “Diane be still at the table, Diane be still in the car, Diane be still, be still, be still!”
It was very easy to understand what my father in essence was instructing me to do . . . he was basically telling me to stop moving!! Be still always meant the same thing, sit still, don’t move, and stop fidgeting.
Now as an adult I hear the voice of a different father instructing me with those same words, and yet I can’t help but feel they have a completely different meaning.
The first time I read those words in the Bible was in the story of the Israelites’ exodus out of Egypt. The people came to the Red Sea, turned to see the Egyptian army approaching, and trapped between the two, they cried out in fear.
The scripture reads, “The Lord will fight for you; you need only be still.” Exodus 14:14
But then one verse later the Lord says, “. . . Tell the Israelites to move on. Raise your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea to divide the water so that the Israelites can go through the sea on dry ground.”
These words confused me at the time because they seemed opposite to me. How do you say be still and then tell me to move? My whole life be still meant don’t move.
Have you ever read the scriptures and just felt confused? Me too, and this was definitely one of those times.
Thankfully the Lord gives to us freely the Holy Spirit to assist us in the translation of scripture. Turns out the real meaning of be still in this scripture is not don’t move, but rather have peace. It means calm your emotions, let the raging seas within be stilled, and trust that the Lord is in control.
Though I have never been trapped between an Egyptian army and a great body of water, I have faced battles in life where I felt scared, stuck, and insecure. Often times in these battles I would feel frozen in my fear, afraid to make any movement.
Is that you right now? Are you in a battle in life where you feel stuck? Does it look like you are in a situation and there is no way out? You are not alone, I have been there too. And the Lord gives us a very specific direction in these moments, He says . . . be still.
He sweetly whispers into our spirit be still. His desire in those moments is to breathe His spirit of peace into our scary place not just to calm us, but to also show us which way to move!
God will gladly fight our battles for us, but first He wants to see us step out of our fear and move forward in faith. He wants us to trust Him and allow His spirit to make us move on the path He has placed before us.
If you are looking at your situation and you are thinking “but there is no path before me, there is no way”, remember that God makes a way when there is no way.
I believe that the Holy Spirit is telling me that there is someone who is reading this with tears in their eyes, and they are desperately hoping that these words would be true in their life. If that someone is you then pray this prayer of hope with me. And if that someone is not you, but you know a person that needs to hear these words then please share it with them. Remember ladies we need each other, and we are better together!
Dear Lord Jesus,
I need you. I need you to make a way because it looks like there is no way. I need you to breathe your breath of peace into me and calm my fears and pains. Help me to trust you and believe that you are greater than my circumstances, and may the winds of your spirit make me move forward in faith. Thank you Lord Jesus for what you are going to do and for always being the Way, in your name, Amen.
Diane Swan is a Professional Christian Counselor, Speaker and Blogger who is passionate about using her God given gifts to assist ladies in living victorious lives in Christ. She enjoys sharing true life messages that relate to the complex lives of every day women and leaves them feeling equipped to be more than conquerors in all their battles. Diane and her husband Todd are the founders of Seven Swans Ministries, an organization devoted to living out the gifts of the Spirit by offering a unique array of services to encourage, edify and expand God’s kingdom. Connect with Diane anytime: Facebook – Pinterest – Twitter – Website