Ultimate Joy

Stillness

Posted on: November 1, 2011

I never thought I’d catch a cold living in California.  Compared to where I lived in Illinois, this is the land of perpetual sun and warmth.  Yet, here I am struggling with a cold. I guess germs live everywhere – even in Paradise.  The irony is for the past 4 years, I didn’t catch one in Illinois, but less then two months after arriving, here I am with hot tea, tissues and a blanket wrapped around my shoulders.

Occasionally a burst of energy will jolt me and I can complete some work – like finishing up this entry.  But I wonder if I’m being truthful to myself about how well I feel, since I just tried warming my cup of tea in the cabinet instead of the microwave.

Sadly my thoughts turn to all I am missing. Even though I’m still getting connected here, my life is extremely busy. There are meetings, lunch dates with friends, walks in the park with my dog Lily, travel plans and more.  That doesn’t include my daily responsibilities …cleaning the house, searching for employment and playing nurse to my dog that was just spayed.  It’s a whirlwind of activities to be sure.

Most of us like being busy.  We like being part of the team, experiencing new things, seeing the completion of our projects.

When you are not feeling well, you begin to see problems with busyness.

Sickness brings a laser-sharp focus to how busyness has overpowered your life and crowded God out.

Every day, the Holy Spirit prompts me to remember Jesus’ words, “Be still and know that I am God.”

But, I reply, “How can I possibly be still when there is so much living to do?”

But He repeats, “Be still and know that I am God.”

“How can I be still when life is overflowing with to-do lists, activities and friendships?” I answer. Regrettably, God’s small voice gets overrun by my priorities instead of His.

But when I am sick, when my body is exhausted and unable to go any further, I welcome the Holy Spirit’s promptings of “Be still and know that I am God.”

Being sick means raising the white flag: I can’t fight it anymore!  My body needs His stillness even more than sleep.  It is as if the Lord put a soothing cold compress on my feverish forehead and said directly to me, “Rest my child. Be still.”

Yesterday, I had one of those encounters.  I had about ten projects I wanted to complete before day’s end. Even though I was up and off the couch for part of the day, all I longed to do was curl up in a ball under my electric blanket and let the world pass me by.

Later that night, I prayed God would give me a relaxing, uninterrupted night’s sleep.  The last three nights were spent sleeping fitfully, if at all, taking care of Lily after her surgery.

I awoke this morning, much more rested, but still unable to take on the tasks of my overcrowded schedule.  “That’s okay,” prompts the Holy Spirit, “This is the day that the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it.”

And that is my choice for today.  I’ll try to accomplish a few things scheduled for completion yesterday. But, I will also steal away to remember that God is in control.  And in that, I will be joyous.

Remember to take some time today and thank God for surrounding us with wonderful blessings.  Stop, reflect, slow down. It’s in these moments that God touches us…

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