Summer Devotional | 2020 - Day 5

Why Do I Have to “Be Still”?

By Kariss Dickerson

“Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!”

Psalm 46:10

We got married in February and just brought home a puppy. I blame COVID-19 quarantine for our crazy decision, but Maverick is the cutest, sweetest ball of fluff. But one thing he isn’t…wise. Smart, yes. Trainable, yes. Wise? Nope. He hasn’t quite learned yet that my husband and I have his (and our) best at heart as we teach him “the way he should go.” He’s still learning his masters. And as believers, I think we are constantly learning ours, too. And maybe we need to recognize even more just how big He is.

Psalm 46:10 is a verse often quoted but rarely quoted fully. If you break it down, it has three parts. Two are our responsibility. One has absolutely nothing to do with us…but we are invited to be part of it. The best part? The writer presents God Himself speaking in this verse. These are the words and thoughts about your God toward you: “Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!”

Be still.
Other versions say to “cease striving.” That is a tough command to swallow. Unless Maverick is sleeping, he has no idea how to be still, and frankly neither do I. As a high achieving, goal-oriented, dreamer, I am constantly moving. My stillness is typically due to hitting my crash point. I stop long enough to recharge and do it all over again. Even my sleep doesn’t tend to be very “still” or restful. The art of stillness…that is a discipline I am still trying to master.

Know that He is God.
I think stillness helps us grasp this second step better. I’ve been challenged to approach Scripture passages and verses with two questions: Who are you, Lord? And what do you want from me? One should dictate the other. And Psalm 46:10 makes it very clear which should drive.

And here’s my favorite part, and the part of the verse that is so often left out:

He will be exalted in the nations and all the earth.
God is going to make His name famous and get the glory with or without you and me. But don’t you want to be part of it? Don’t you want to cease striving, know He is God, and watch Him be exalted? I don’t think that removes our responsibility of working hard, spreading the gospel, and waging war. We are called to do those things, but we don’t control the results. He doesn’t need us. But He wants us. He sent His Son for us. But we are terrible gods. We aren’t in control. Sometimes we need to be still before Him, get out of the way, remember who He is (sovereign, good, Creator, Ruler, King), and just sit in awe as He is exalted.

Daily Challenge

In what ways are you seeking to control your own world? Take 15 minutes, put your phone away, and just be still with the Lord today. Ask Him how you can make His name more famous, even in this season of uncertainty. Ask Him to use you to be part of it. Then watch expectantly for how He chooses to answer and be ready to respond to His calling.

Author Bio

Kariss Dickerson

Kariss serves on staff creating content and writing for the church. She believes that powerful stories can change lives for the Kingdom, and she loves helping people share their testimonies of grace. She is the author of four books, new wife to Josh, and new puppy parent to Maverick.