Sunday, August 17, 2008

"First Be Quiet"

A few months ago I signed up to receive a daily email 'devotion' taken from the writings of Elizabeth Elliott. She is a breath of fresh air - clean, pure, cold fresh air. So different from the "chicken soup" and "warm fuzzies" that are so easy to come by. So here's a challenge, this Sunday, in her words, (from A Lamp For My Feet).


Our hectic lives involve many changes, and changes require decisions, and decisions must often be made in the midst of a multitude of confusions. We run here and there asking advice. Often we make decisions without sufficient deliberation because we simply haven't time--or so we tell ourselves.

There is a marvelously helpful practice that we usually overlook. It is quietness. Notice how often in the gospels we find Jesus going away alone, even when people needed Him. He deliberately chose solitude. The more hectic our lives become, the more necessary is this quietness. When it is impossible to break away physically to a place of solitude for a day or so in order to think and pray over a hard decision, there is one thing which I think helps--do not speak about the decision to anyone but God for forty-eight hours at least. Just hold it before Him alone. Keep your mouth shut for two days. Pray. Listen. Seek his counsel.

Try this, too--sit before Him for fifteen consecutive minutes in silence, focusing your mind on the words of Psalm 86:11 (NEB), "Guide me, O Lord, that I may be true to thee and follow thy path."

3 comments:

Cindy said...

Julie,

Great thoughts!! Thanks for sharing, I love how simple yet profound the exercise is, to just mediatate before God. I love that!!

I also have 3 boys..big fun!! Plus I homeschool. They are 17,13 and 9. Time does fly. It is great to meet you!

In Him!
Cindy

Julie said...

I love Elizabeth Elliott, and this reading is a timely encouragement that goes against the grain of our culture, especially for many of us women.

We're talkers! (Or writers.) I've heard friends say, "I process while I'm talking." And, granted, it's great to get the advice of godly friends. But... often, I think, we end up pooling our ignorance.

EE is right to remind us (me!) to go FIRST to God.

Civilla said...

Loved your blog. Especially the Civil War Reenactment! I've never been to one of those! Have fun with your boys. I have 2 boys -- 21 (and on his own in college) and 19 (in college but near home). They grow up fast!