Testimony Tuesday: Keeping Still

The Lord will fight for you,
and you have only to keep still.

– Exodus 14:14

Keeping still.

It’s never been my strongest attribute.

I fidget, constantly. I play with my hair, gnaw at my nails, tap my foot. I do almost anything to keep from keeping still, actually.

And yet, in the grander scheme of things, it has so seemed like that’s exactly what the Lord is asking me to do right now. Keep still, He whispers to me. I feel called to keep still in life, in location, in all of it.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t see this as a bad thing. In fact, I’m fairly certain that this is the most still I’ve felt in ages… perhaps my entire life, though I only have twenty-three years to base that judgement off of.

I feel like your twenties are such an uncertain, ever changing age. Perhaps we don’t all face the hostilities of Moses and his people as they fled from Egypt, but we can all learn from it. I feel like there’s some sort of metaphor there…

As if, in our twenties, we are inclined, even tempted, to flee from our childhoods, and whatever we may associate with it. For some, that’s a town, or a mindset, or a relationship. But the Lord, ever so gently, so wisely, is urging us to keep still. Don’t be rash. Pray. Trust.

He will continue to fight for us, for the life He knows we ought to live.

I know the conflicted feeling so well – the feeling of wanting to go one way, but feeling as if you should go another. It’s in that conflict that I hear the Lord. He is the one on my heart telling me what I should do, and right now, I’m in a season on stillness. And even though I might have friends galavanting across foreign countries, or whisking away into the wilderness, or jumping head-first into some other terrifying, thrilling thing… the Lord is calling me to keep still.

To stay put.

To listen.

To trust.

And you know what?

That is perfectly okay. 

I resign myself to it, to His will, to listening, and to obeying. I resign myself to keeping still.

For all I know, stillness may end up being the best gift He’s ever given me.

Testimony Tuesday: Are You There, God? It’s Me, Taylor

Okay, so that post title is a little dramatic, and to be honest, I never read the book it’s based on (or if I did, it was a long, long time ago and I can’t quite recall). But that’s not the point.

The point is, sometimes, it’s really, really hard to hear the Father. Whether that’s because we just aren’t listening, or because the world is just too loud… sometimes, it’s difficult to focus.

Again, this is an inherent part of being a sinful human, and we are so blessed that our Lord doesn’t fret or condemn when we can’t hear Him properly. Instead, He just keeps speaking to us, guiding us, being beside us, even when we aren’t equipped to see His hand in things.

Which is exactly where another key element in a strong relationship with God comes in… trust.

Now, I’ve spoken and written and ranted on before about how trust is one my biggest demons sometimes – or rather, how doubt is. And all of that is still true. I will likely wrangle with the sin of doubt for my entire life. Again, an unfortunate side effect of being human.

In the past few weeks, I’ve become more comfortable with the idea of blindness; more specifically, blindness in trust. I can feel, so strongly, the Lord calling me to trust him even in moments where my human sight can’t see, where my mortal ears can’t hear, where my doubt would usually otherwise overcome me. Sure, blind trust is uncomfortable and reckless… but so is the Father’s love.

We owe Him the same recklessness that He shows us each and every moment of each and every single day.

I am so unspeakably grateful for His gracious, blind trust in me, so why would I not offer Him the same in return? Besides, being able to let go of my uncertainties and trust that He is always there, above the noise, is a comfort and warmth so great, it overwhelms any discomfort that my sinful doubt might bring.

Thank you, Father, for trusting me to trust in You. Thank You for standing beside me even when I cannot see You. Thank You for speaking to me and guiding me when my ears cannot hear above the noise. Thank You for never letting go of me, even when I question if You have. Amen.

Have I not commanded you?
Be strong and courageous.
Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed,
for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.
— Joshua 1:9

Testimony Tuesday: Making Time

Time.

In some ways, I’m great at managing it. I am a scheduler, a planner, an always-show-up-10-minutes-early-er.

In other ways, I know I fail. I am not so great at prioritizing, and I have a terrible tendency to double-book myself, because I’m not so great at saying “no.”

In the hecticness, I’ve realized that there are thing I need to make time for. I need to make time for exercise, I need to make time for my relationship, I need to make time for friendships.

I need to make time for God.

Walk in wisdom toward outsiders,
making the best use of the time.
– Colossians 4:5

I’ve struggled with this lately, but as is usually the case, when I find myself struggling, I also find myself actively correcting. And so, that is what I have done lately. Or at the very least, what I have tried to do.

When I can’t make it to small group (which has been discouragingly often) I set aside some time to sit and be in the Word. Surprisingly (or, probably not so much so, as we know there is a plan for it all), each time I do this, I feel more connected with the Lord than I may have had I gone to group, which tends to feel much more like a social obligation than a spiritual one.

I’ve been working through a weekly Lent study, which has had me committed to about an hour with my Bible and my journal, whenever I can fit it in.

And that’s the catch, I think I’m realizing. Whenever I can fit it in. I schedule out my workouts according to what the rest of my week looks like. I schedule my dates, my happy hours, my family dinners. Why shouldn’t I schedule my time with God?

Maybe someday it will come much more second nature — and I pray that it does. But for now, I must make time for God intentionally, just as I would make time for any other relationship in life.

I’m still learning how to be a better Christian, and I’m still growing in my relationship with the Lord, and I am coming to accept that I have my faults, and that even more so, that is perfectly okay.

Happy Tuesday.