Tag Archives: stillness

THE STILLNESS OF SUNDAY – Can you be still before the LORD?

Be Still Before the Lord – Can you do that?

I know I have trouble being still. It takes concentration and discipline.

I wrote about this in QUIET.

today, I read about how to “quieten the clamouring voices” in my mind (from Quiet by Janis Cox).

How is your “mental racket”? (tweet this)

Try to take a few minutes today to quieten yourself before the Lord.

 

Be still before the Lord

Be still before the Lord – Photograph compliments of Geri Woudstra.

IN THE STILLNESS

In the stillness I wait

I wait and I listen

Breathe in the breath of God

Focus on Jesus

He comes

He says, “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, NIV).”

Prayer:

In the stillness, Lord, we know we can find You. Help us to take a few minutes to wait for you in the quiet. In Jesus’ name. AMEN.

What techniques do you use to help you be still before the Lord? (tweet this)

Today’s Post is Reprinted from the Archives with a few additions. We should, by the time you read this post, have relocated to our winter home, shopped for food and tried to dislodge from jetlag.

JanisCox-photo2web

Janis is the author of the award winning children’s book, Tadeo Turtle, published by Word Alive Press. Available in Kindle Format, in bookstores, online and from her website. Curriculum available upon request. Janis also is a contributor to Hope Stream Radio. Join her on Tuesdays and Saturdays.

Tadeo-Turtle-Cover-large-web

You can find her on Facebook, and Twitter. Tadeo has his own Facebook Page.

 

 

 

 

 

I sometimes link to:

STILL SATURDAYS @SANDRAHESKAKING
PLAYDATES @LAURABOGGESS
THE WEEKEND BREW @BARBIESWIHART
TITUS TUESDAYS @CORNERSTONE CONFESSIONS
THE SUNDAY COMMUNITY – #GIVE ME GRACE @SEE SPEAK HEAR MAMA
SPIRITUAL SUNDAYS – @SPIRITUAL SUNDAYS
MOTIVATION MONDAYS – @EMBRACINGHISWILL
SHARING HIS BEAUTY – @THEBEAUTYINHISGRIP

 

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Sunday Stillness – God tells us to Sit Still

Sunday Stillness – God tells us to Sit Still

God-tells-us-to-sit-still

Photo from FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Lately I have been having a hard time settling into a quiet time with the Lord. Does that happen to you?

This morning I finally said, “SIT STILL, Jan.” And I did. I sat so still I fell asleep. But that’s not bad either. At least I stopped. I felt a stillness I haven’t felt in a while.

It reminded me of my first time trying to sit still. Really I couldn’t sit for more than 5 minutes. Now I could sit still but I always feel like there are other things pressing on my time.

Really? – other things more pressing than being with God, Himself?

Oh no. That’s not good.

I felt a peace and calmness that I haven’t reached for a while.

Lately have been reading, studying, and thinking. Praying, petitioning. I’ve had an active brain.

I recalled reading Ron Hughes’ terrific book, called Refresh.

refresh-promo

What’s been going on in my life Ron calls a “mental racket”.

My brain has played a rock concert for the past month.

At least now I know what I have been missing. I need to stop after praying and reading the Bible. I need to focus on Jesus. Get Still.

I must take that time – to quieten my thoughts before God.

Here is an acronym to help you and me to remember what being still and in God’s presence really means

PEACE

P – Put

E – Everything

A – Aside

C – Calm

E – Ensues

Take time with Jesus today. You will be glad you did.

Tweetable:

I must take that time – to quieten my thoughts before God. (click to tweet)

I found this video to express exactly what I have been feeling. We sang it on Sunday.

The words in the second first really meant a lot to me:

Take time to be holy, the world rushes on
Spend much time in secret with Jesus alone.

Today is Sunday Stillness.

Last week my post was called Quiet Moments and I posted a picture of a deer. Here is my latest meeting with a deer. I hope you enjoy.

JanisCox-photo2web

Janis is the author of the award winning children’s book, Tadeo Turtle, published by Word Alive Press. Available in Kindle Format, in bookstores, online and from her website. Curriculum available upon request. Janis also is a contributor to Hope Stream Radio. Join her on Tuesdays and Saturdays.

Tadeo-Turtle-Cover-large-web

You can find her on Facebook, and Twitter. Tadeo has his own Facebook Page.

 

 

 

 

 

I sometimes link to:

STILL SATURDAYS @SANDRAHESKAKING
PLAYDATES @LAURABOGGESS
THE WEEKEND BREW @BARBIESWIHART
TITUS TUESDAYS @CORNERSTONE CONFESSIONS
THE SUNDAY COMMUNITY – #GIVE ME GRACE @SEE SPEAK HEAR MAMA
SPIRITUAL SUNDAYS – @SPIRITUAL SUNDAYS
MOTIVATION MONDAYS – @EMBRACINGHISWILLSHARING HIS BEAUTY – @THEBEAUTYINHISGRIP

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Sunday Stillness – How to hear God’s gentle whisper

Sunday Stillness – How to hear God’s gentle whisper

How-to-hear-God's-gentle-whisper

From freedigitalphotos.net

I had a hearing test a few weeks ago. Bottom line –  I can’t hear very well. There seems to be a problem with my ear drums not vibrating – so maybe fluid behind my ear drum.

My hearing is the worst when there is other noise around.

I thought about our lives – and all the stimuli that we deal with on a day to day basis. Are we so overloaded with noise that we can’t even hear God speak?

Thinking again about my life – what can cause me to stop listening to God?

I came up with these but I am sure you have different ones:

  • working on the computer (my mind focused on the task at hand)
  • making meals
  • cleaning
  • listening to music
  • watching a movie
  • talking with friends
  • errands
  • reading a good book
  • relating to friends and family

Then I came up with times that I could listen to God:

  • driving by myself in my car
  • lying in bed in the morning and at night
  • on a walk by myself
  • waiting for an appointment
  • working on a watercolour picture
  • during my morning study and prayer time
  • stoplights
  • grocery lineups

So although we lead busy, active lives we can find the time to listen to God, don’t you think?

We know that God is in all things
but it is much easier to hear Him when we are silent.

Remember Elijah. He didn’t hear God in the wind, or earthquake or fire – but in the gentle whisper.

A hurricane wind ripped through the mountains and shattered the rocks before God, but God wasn’t to be found in the wind; after the wind an earthquake, but God wasn’t in the earthquake; and after the earthquake fire, but God wasn’t in the fire; and after the fire a gentle and quiet whisper (1 Kings 19:11-12, The Message).

 

Prayer:

Lord, we need to be quiet to really listen to You. Help us find the minutes to slow down and hear Your voice. Show us those moments that will help us relate fully to You. In Jesus’ name. AMEN.

For you this Sunday – In the Secret, In the Quiet Place by Andy Park

Tweetable:

How to hear God’s gentle whisper. (tweet this)

We know that God is in all things but it is much easier to hear Him when we are silent. (tweet this)

Lord, in the secret in the quiet place I want to know You more. Andy Park. (tweet this)

Today is Sunday Stillness – others join me to link their posts about what God is teaching them. Enjoy.

 



Sunday Stillness – Psalm 139:1-4

Sunday Stillness – Psalm 139:1-4

Jesus-Calling

I bought a little sketch book recently and as I read the Bible, and my devotionals I have been using my new watercolour pencils to sketch what I feel.

As I read Jesus Calling on August 24th, I felt God’s presence and saw Him hovering over everything – the sea depicted me… full of ups and downs, but full of life.

You have searched me, Lord,
and you know me.
You know when I sit and when I rise;
you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down;
you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue
you, Lord, know it completely (Psalm 139:1-4, NIV).

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Today is Sunday Stillness.

Do you have a Scripture that spoke to you this week? Please link below. If you post to Twitter use #sundaystillness and @authorjaniscox.

Feel free to pin the picture. Follow me at AuthorJanisCox on Pinterest.

I would love it if you would subscribe to my blog. See the sidebar to enter your email address.

Read the Sunday Stillness rules if you are new here.

I would appreciate if you would link only about God’s Word. If you have a linky party that’s okay if it is about the same thing. Please no sales or prizes. I want this to be friendly but I must ask you to abide by the rules. Others want to read God’s Word – and that is what I would like the links to be about. I must take down the links that don’t follow the rules. Thanks so much.

JOIN THE SUNDAY STILLNESS COMMUNITY – 
READ OTHER POSTS AND ENCOURAGE ONE ANOTHER.

Please check out all the places I link to during the week. Thanks to everyone who has joined Sunday Stillness. I do try to get to your posts every week but I admit sometimes I don’t have the time.

Here are my favourite links for Sunday Stillness:

The Sunday Community

Still Saturday

 Sharing His Beauty

Missional Women – Faith Filled Fridays

Scripture and Snapshot

http://christianmommyblogger.com

The Weekend Brew



ARE YOU WAITING?

Are You Waiting?

(reprinted from Under the Cover of Prayer)

by Janis Cox

Oh – to learn to slow down. A number of times in the past week I have read about “waiting”.

    • My Advent study from Margaret Feinberg – first week – WAIT.
    • A speaker at a women’s dinner said, “learn to unitask”.
    • Tadeo – my turtle goes slowly – something I need to learn.
    • Then I read Jesus Calling – “it is good to wait quietly” (Lamentations 3:26 NIV).

I took a deep breath. I sighed. Yes I do need to slow down or I will miss the waiting. This waiting for Christmas can be a Holy time if I let it.

I responded to Margaret’s words in Wonderstruck.

I particularly liked when she wrote about “Three Word Prayers”. I realized I needed to slow down my words to God. To release them ONE at a time.

Thank You God

Wonder. Power. Healing.

Search my soul.

Sense my being.

“Every word, every syllable, demanded mindfulness” (Wonderstruck, page 78).

“Three word prayers required me to reengage spiritual muscles that had long ago grown flabby” (Wonderstruck, page 80)”

Do I ramble at God like a nagging wife? Or do I slow it down and make each word count?

“Be still and know that I am God.”

That is what God said. Not chatter and beg – but be STILL.

So in this first week of Advent I have tried to be still. I have tried to seek the quietness that He wants. And you know what – it is good. I rested in Him.

The First Week of Advent

A time to wait
A time to listen to God
Still your hearts
Still your souls.

Slow down your thoughts
Focus on Him
Let distractions cease
[even for a few minutes]

Who is this God?
What is eternity?

“Be still
And know

I am God

Get to know Me.”

Breathe

God is LOVE
God knew you before you were born
God knows you now
God will know you forever!

Janis Cox 2012

“Modern man has lost the perspective of eternity. To distract himself form the gaping jaws of death, he engages in ceaseless activity and amusement” (Jesus Calling, Sarah Young).

Ceaseless activity VS Stillness in Him?

Which are you doing this Christmas?

I would love to hear from you.

Here is Chris Tomlin and Everlasting God (Wait Upon the Lord)

 

QUIET – Five-Minute Fridays

Quiet – Five-Minute Fridays

 

Stillness before God

I am silently laughing to myself. A couple of minutes ago I finished spending my “quiet time” with our Lord. A very good quiet time.

YES – I sat still. I didn’t move. I let all thoughts leave my mind except the word “Jesus”. An unbelievable peace came over me.

When I first sat down this morning I had picked up a new book called Refresh by Ron Hughes. He also has a free workbook to go with Refresh.  I read through the second chapter called “Be Quiet”. No kidding – that is the chapter I studied this morning.

Ron’s book has 19 ways to boost your spiritual life. If every chapter has the result of this morning I will be ecstatic.

I feel a peace and calmness that I haven’t reached for a while.

I used to take time to SIT STILL. But, lately I have been reading, studying, and thinking. Praying, petitioning. An active brain. This is what Ron calls “mental racket”. Well my brain has played a rock concert.

Instead, today, I read about how to “quieten the clamouring voices” in my mind.

Then I opened my computer – and voila… there is Lisa-Jo’s word for this Friday. QUIET. Could God be telling me it any stronger?

I must take that time – to quieten my thoughts before God.

Time’s up – but before I leave here is an acronym that came to me this morning.

PEACE

P – Put

E – Everything

A – Aside

C – Calm

E – Ensues

Have a wonderful day! linking in to Lisa-Jo’s Five-Minute Fridays.

Blessings,

Jan 

HOW DO I COME INTO HIS PRESENCE WHEN I AM LONELY?

How Do I Come Into His Presence When I am Lonely?

His Presence – Stillness

by Mary Haskett

I wanted to enter into His presence, but it seemed I could not find the way. Loneliness struck once again. My husband had been gone to heaven for more than eighteen months, and still, waves of loneliness would wash over me. Try as I might to fight them off—they stayed.

A while ago I read Jan’s blog about being still for five minutes every day, shutting out all noise and distractions and concentrating on Him. Have I practiced it? No. Have I ever practiced it? Yes— many times, and in the practicing have experienced the overflowing presence of the Holy Spirit filling me with confidence and peace.

I determined once again to enter into that quiet place and as I did, Andrew Culverwell’s song , Cover Me Lord with Your Presence, popped into mind. I searched online until I found it. I have entered again into His presence and the loneliness has dissipated.

Jesus understands our ups and downs, since He knows every aspect of our lives. I love in John 14:18 where He declares, I will not leave you comfortless. “Come,” He says, “into my presence and I will comfort you.”

How do we do that? Immediately the Scripture pops into my mind:

“Be still and know that I am God”  (Psalm 46:10 NIV).

This very stillness, this focusing on Him, then talking to Him, calms our troubled spirits. Praise His Name.

Prayer:

Dear Lord, In times of turmoil, sadness and loneliness, help us to quiet our spirits and enter into Your reassuring Presence.

Mary Haskett

Mary is a writer and speaker. Since becoming a Christian she has served as Director of Women’s ministries, Singles Fellowship, counseling and prayer.

She is a member of The The Word Guild. and Inscribe Christian Writers’ Fellowship. Mary is the founder of Ready Writers, London

Her book Reverend Mother’s Daughter was a finalist in the 2008 Word Guild of Canada Awards and won an IPPY award in the states. Her second book Because We Prayed was released last year.  She has had many articles published and  has been a regular contributor to the community publication Christian Life in London. You can visit her on her website.

PERSON AT PRAYER

Person at Prayer

by Judith Lawrence

One of the most tender images is the human person at prayer. When the body gathers itself before the Divine, a stillness deepens. The blaring din of distraction ceases, and the deeper tranquility within the heart envelops the body. To see people at prayer is a touching sight. …It is as if they have chosen to enter into a secret belonging carried within the soul; they rest in that inner temple impervious to outer control or claiming. [To see] a person at prayer…reminds us that we are mere guests on the earth, pilgrims who always walk on unsteady ground, carrying in earthen vessels multitudes of longing. John O’Donahue, Eternal Echoes Page 184.

When John O’Donahue speaks of choosing to enter into a secret belonging carried within the soul; it reminds me of how Christ tells us that when we pray we should go away by ourselves, shut the door behind us, and pray to our Father in secret. Matthew 6:6

When we pray, it is as if we enter a different realm of being from where we normally exist. As an astronaut goes into a different realm of physical existence when he travels into outer space, so does a Christian go into a different realm of spiritual existence when he prays.

We may think about God at all times of our daily lives but, when we consciously pray to God alone, it is as if we are wrapped in a spiritual tranquility, going down deep into our soul’s being where God alone exists, and where the Holy Spirit dwells within us.

Here is where God dwells in secret within us and where we dwell in secret within God our Creator. This is where we are at home in one another—God in us and we in God; it is where the praying Christian is totally at home in God’s love and in the temple of the Holy Spirit, and where we are new born in God every prayer moment.

Judith Lawrence

Judith is a Professional member of The Word Guild and author of two non-fiction books, Prayer Companion: A Treasury of Personal Meditation, and Glorious Autumn Days: Meditations for the Wisdom Years, as well as one book of mystical poetry, Grapes from the Vine. Judith writes a monthly meditation, which can be found on her website: www.judithlawrence.ca.  Judith’s latest spiritual book, Highway of Holiness: Soul Journey is now available. You can purchase it through Wipf and Stock Publishers.

SHUT ME UP, LORD

Shut Me Up, Lord

by Jan Cox

This past weekend my girlfriend and I promised to pray and listen to God. But, you know what? We got side-tracked with our own thoughts and ideas.

We even went on a half hour nature hike to pray. But, we took my little dog too. Bad idea. If you know dogs, she sniffed at everything, interrupted our prayers and made concentration difficult. That was our first distraction.

Then we really did start praying. We thanked God for the beauty of His creation; the leaves changing colours; how we wanted Him in our lives and we were ready to listen to Him. Then we stopped. Yes – we did stop. Did we stop to listen? NO.

We started chatting. We didn’t listen.

I would say out of the half hour of hiking we actually prayed for five minutes and listened for one, and even that is a maybe.

“Prayer is an effort of will….and the first thing that conflicts is wandering thoughts.”1

Oswald Chambers is talking here about private prayer but it happens with prayer partners too.

“We have to discipline our minds and concentrate on willful prayer.”2

Oswald talks about “shutting thy door”. When we talk to God in prayer with a partner maybe I have to learn to shut my mouth and be quiet. Yes, shut up, Jan.

The next time my friend and I get together I want to be focused, disciplined and willful. I want to listen to Him not me.

It was a beautiful walk and we did worship God as we viewed His creation. And even in the five minutes of prayer we felt His presence. How much more would we have gained had we prayed instead of chatted? Listened instead of talked? I wonder.

1,2 Quotes from Oswald Chambers are found in August 23. I encourage you to read this devotion.

Prayer:

Oh Father. Help me to learn to be more disciplined in my prayer life, alone and with a partner. Help me choose to make the time, and be silent and still before You. In Jesus’ name. AMEN.

My Gratitude List for this week:

  • Great visit with old friends
  • Returning to study One Thousand Gifts this fall
  • Great discussion on Chapter 7 of OTG – Empty to Fill
    Closing fingers.. holding, damming grace – making stagnant water – joy dies
  • Hubby starts to renovated the bathroom (little did we know what this would involve!)
  • Great to have two different groups of women studying OTG
  • Washing dishes by hand (brings togetherness)
  • The stillness of the early morning
  • Seeing God in the faces of others
  • Meeting God in meditation
  • Hubby pulling out the old shower (YUCK!)
  • Being able to climb a ladder without fear – yes me.

Jan Cox

Jan, a former school teacher and small business owner, found a new passion in writing in her retirement. She has published two devotionals and a number of articles for magazines and a Bible study. She is owner of Under the Cover of Prayer and moderates the site. She also writes at A Better Way. Jan has written a children’s book in which she is also the watercolour illustrator. She hopes to publish it this year.