There is Great Power In Stillness,
Maybe Just Not In The Way We Expect It

“…Be still, and know that I am God.” I think this phrase is often misapplied, and misunderstood. I have heard it this verse used to convey an idea of quietness, as in the lack of sound. Quiet down, don’t be so noisy. In context we find a deeper and more powerful truth,

7 The Lord Almighty is with us;
    the God of Jacob is our fortress.

8 Come and see what the Lord has done,
    the desolations he has brought on the earth.
9 He makes wars cease
    to the ends of the earth.
He breaks the bow and shatters the spear;
    he burns the shields with fire.
10 He says, “Be still, and know that I am God;
    I will be exalted among the nations,
    I will be exalted in the earth.”

11 The Lord Almighty is with us;
    the God of Jacob is our fortress.

Psalm 46:7-11 (NIV)

The stillness the psalmist is referring to is not a silencing, but a calming and a comforting. The context of Psalm 46 find the psalmist surrounded by trouble, trouble that we can all relate too. Have you ever felt like the ground was falling out beneath your feet and all the things you could count on were falling down all around you (v.2)? Have you ever felt like you were drowning or being crushed by the weight of your troubles (v.3)? The psalmist is speaking to many of our lives today.

When trouble comes we often react in two ways. One is that we shift into crisis management mode, and get serious and focused on solving the problem. We dedicate immense energy and strength to solving the problem above all else. The second is that we panic, we fall apart, we melt into a puddle.

The first response, on the surface looks like a good plan, but people in crisis management mode often make very drastic, very bad decisions. They cut people off or isolate themselves. They cut corners or take chances they wouldn’t normally take.

It’s not hard to see what the problems are with the second option either, but what if there was a third option?


God’s command to “Be still and know that I am God;” is empowering. He is saying DON’T. DO. ANYTHING. Just be still and know that he is in control. That command of be still is not a be quiet, but a calm down, relax, let me take care of this, command.

In crisis we feel like we have to do something, but that is the unnerving power of stillness. We must trust that God will be our fortress and protect us and provide the solution. Then when he provides the solution we just have to be ready to reach out and take hold of it.

The closing verse of Psalm 46 is:

The Lord Almighty is with us;
    the God of Jacob is our fortress.

How do you use a fortress? Do you swing it around at your enemies? Do you shoot it or throw it? No, you just sit in it and wait.

If you are in crisis maybe it would be a good time to stop, and listen for God’s promise to protect us and to just rest in his protection and be ready to take hold of his solution when it comes.

Worship Song List For 9-24

  • Strong Tower
  • Cornerstone
  • Blessed Assurance (My King Is Coming Soon)
  • Be Still My Soul (In You I Rest)
  • It Is Well (Through It All)
  • Joy Of The Lord

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Evanston Avenue Baptist Church

1188 Evanston Avenue
Muskegon MI 49442
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