Last post I shared about getting with God to hear Him in my time of not being sure what He has next for Ed & me. I shared about going in with what I thought I would hear and what I ended up actually hearing. As I’ve been spending more time in this Crafted Prayer study that Sam, Ashley and I are on, the more I realize that stillness is something that many of us are struggling with, whether we realize it or not. I think Americans are probably some of the most challenged in being still, having a quiet mind. In our day and age there is so much noise and ways to divert our attention and things to keep our minds occupied that many of us may not even remember if we’ve ever had a peaceful moment in our minds. The Lord is impressing on me that for us to be able to really hear Him, this is something we need to be willing to do but it’s something we might not know how to do, or even think we will be able to do.
There are a lot of reasons we don’t want to let our mind get too quiet but there is one I want to address that I think might be the biggest hurdle for many. If we let our internal thoughts have a place, our minds go to things that cause us too much pain and we’ve learned to avoid that at all costs. I know that the reason many people drink, do various types of drugs, are constantly on the run is because of this very thing. Stillness and quietness of the mind for them is a thing to avoid at all costs. I admit, I feel very out of my element here because, although I’ve had some very unpleasant things happen in my life, I know they do not compare to some of the things that have happened to others, maybe have happened to you. I in no way want to minimize the devastation of the trauma you may have gone or be going through, but I know that for this very reason our Heavenly Father’s healing is needed. He greatly desires for you to hear Him and what He has to say to you and about you and the enemy’s plan is to keep our Heavenly Father’s voice out of your head is by keeping you away from these thoughts.
Over the last months, through this blog, we’ve been spending a lot of time talking about who our Heavenly Father is versus how we believed our thought He was. How loving and kind He is and that His love for us is so great our human minds cannot comprehend it. In Graham Cooke’s Crafted Prayer book Graham says this about God and it is so very sweet, “God is very generous and the kindest Person I have ever met. He wants us to know what His will is. He longs to release His children from worry and fear.” Our Heavenly Father wants us to know that we can trust Him. We can surrender to Him, let go of whatever is causing our pain, and He promises to carry our burden for us. Jesus said in Matthew 11:29-30 (NKJV) 29 Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” He wants to do a great exchange, on the cross He bore our sicknesses, diseases, curses, and all the sin we’ve committed or that has been committed against us and took that upon Himself. In exchange He asks us to take His yoke upon ourselves and in that we will find a gentle, loving Savior who will give us rest for our souls. This, I pray, is a journey you are on or are willing to begin because it is the path to rest in Him and the ability to be still and be in a place where you can more clearly hear the voice of Your loving Heavenly Father and begin to become a part of that heavenly dialogue about who He created you to be, what His plans are for You and the amazing purpose you were carefully crafted by Him for.
There is an amazing devotional that you might want to do that I think will help us, as daughter’s of our Heavenly Father, begin or expand this journey of healing. It’s called, He Is My All: Living in the Truth of God’s Love for Me by Debbie Alsdorf (I’ll have the link below in the Resource section). Day by day she does an absolutely amazing job of walking us through the scriptures and showing how much we are loved, how important we are to our Heavenly Father and what an incredible plan He has for every single one of us. It certainly has impacted my life and I’m sure that it contributed to my ability to begin this next phase of my journey in becoming still and being able to begin to more clearly hear God’s voice as part of our Crafted Prayer study. Now I’m not afraid to let my mind be quiet for fear of painful thoughts I was wanting to avoid. Instead, I’ve been able to experience that rest and delight that God said He wanted me to experience while He brings about my desires and secret petitions of my heart (Ps. 37:4).
If we can pursue peace (Ps. 34:14…crave peace and pursue (go after) it!) with a diligence, as though we cannot live without it (and honestly, we can’t live well without it), we will be able to find rest and stillness. Our Heavenly Father wants this for us because as He says in Psalm 46:10 (NKJV) Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth! He wants us to understand the experience of Him being God, God over every aspect of our life and future.
Once you’ve reached the place where you are ready to be still, I’ve also provided a Stillness Exercise that we’ve been using as part of our Crafted Prayer study. I, of course, also highly recommend the whole study because it will absolutely revolutionize your prayer life and interactions with your Heavenly Father, but if, right now, you are just wanting to work on stillness, I believe you will find this very helpful.
This week I may have put a pretty big challenge out there but I am thoroughly convinced that it is worth it and every one of us will find it transformational. I love the parable of the pearl of great price, it goes like this:
Matthew 13:45-47 (AMP)
45 Again the kingdom of heaven is like a man who is a dealer in search of fine and [a]precious pearls,
46 Who, on finding a single pearl of great price, went and sold all he had and bought it.
There are some things that are worth selling all you have and going after, and I believe this is one of them! I know God will meet you where you are and bless you as you search for Him with all of your heart.
Note: I’m still working on the notes and questions for the Crafted Prayer study, should have them up on the Resource Page later this week.
A Daughter’s Prayer – Abba, I have been learning about who You are but it is even more important that I just know You. Things and events have affected me and made it difficult and painful to be still, but You are found in the stillness. Yours is a peaceful and quiet voice but it is also a passionate and powerful voice. I surrender, I choose to surrender to You because You are the kindest and gentlest person I will ever know. I lay down all my obstacles and give them to You, You alone know what to do with them. You promised if I would seek you and search for you with all my heart that I would find You. Nothing is more important than that. Jesus has saved me, and I am Your daughter and I want to really know You and know what all You have for me. In Jesus’ holy name, amen.