2 Practical Ideas for the One Who Struggles to Be Still

I don’t know about you, but this is a hard one for me. Being still. Getting alone with God.

Family, home, schedules, obligations, work, ministry – they all clamor for my time and attention.  Constantly!

Honestly, there is always something that NEEDS to be done.

Important things (or at least so in my mind)!

The Roller Coaster Ride

I have to admit that this practice of being still has been a roller coaster ride for me.  There are times when in sweet communion with God, I’m on the lift hill enjoying the climb to the apex. However, there are also times when busy with “important” things, I journey through days at a time without being still in His presence. This is the part of the ride when I sit on the track at its lowest point, craning my neck upwards toward the pinnacle. Longing.

Yes, like many other aspects of my spiritual journey, being still has its ups and downs. Knowing this, I must learn to live each moment “aware.”

Aware that:
  • all the “important” things clamoring for my time and attention threaten to crowd out my time with God.
  • I can (and tend to) become so preoccupied with the stuff of life, that I don’t take the proper time to be still.
  • my relationship with God relies on my “being still” and spending time alone with Him.
  • making the time to be still is my responsibility.

2 Practical Ways to Be Still

1. Remember and Follow The Example of Jesus

Jesus knew the power of “being still.”

Often in Scripture it is recorded that instead of hurrying off to the next assignment, Jesus went off to a “solitary place.” Notice, that we never see Him frantically rushing off to the next thing – as though it had to be done now, and He alone was the one to do it.

Note as well, that often when we read of Jesus going off to be alone, crowds of people with great need were still assembled.

Think about it? What more important work could there ever be than the work of Jesus? Yet, he left it to be alone with His Father.

This is the example I need to follow.

2. Name It

One simple and practical way to practice “being still” is to give your time with God a name. Sounds a little silly, right?

But hear me out. Names have a way of helping us focus, and if you are anything like me, focus is a huge plus when it comes to follow through.

For instance, I don’t have much trouble writing my alone time on my calendar. However, if I do not have a plan for how that time is going to be spent, I wander aimlessly around or find a thousand other things to do. Either way, this much-needed time with God gets crowded entirely out of my day.

So, here’s a practical little idea. How about giving your time with God a name – one that will help provide focus?

Here are a few little ideas to get you thinking:

NameFocus
Hurry Halt or Be Still BreatherTime alone with God
Meditation MomentMeditating on Scripture
Prayer PauseA time of prayer
Review RespiteReviewing the things God is teaching you
Scripture StopEngaging with the Scripture
Thankful Time OutGiving thanks
Worship WednesdayOffering praise and worship
Recall ThursdayA time to remember what God has done

There are so many ways to incorporate these NAMED times into your own weekly schedule:

  • Choose one and schedule it for the same time each day. (Meditation Moment every day at 10:00 AM)
  • Designate a different focus for each day of the week. (Worship on Wednesday, Recall on Thursday, Scripture Meditation on Monday)
  • Connect it to something you are already doing every day. (Thankful Time Out each morning with first cup of coffee, Prayer each time you fold laundry)

Remember: the names are simply a way for you to give your time alone with God a focus.

I’d love to hear from you. What “focus” names can you come up with and how will you incorporate these times to help you be still?

5 comments on “2 Practical Ideas for the One Who Struggles to Be Still

  1. This is such a great idea and the comments are helpful too.

  2. Thank you for this! Your suggestions for naming are fabulous. I have my priorities in my quiet time, but I love pairing God with the time I spend doing other things, like thankful time during laundry folding. I’ve been looking for ways to broaden and deepen my time with Him, and I know this is good 🙂

  3. I call mine: Retreat in a Basket and when I teach on the “Quiet Time Wars” I list all I like to put in that basket to keep me refueled each day. Great post!

  4. I like the idea of “naming” the pause with the Lord. Monday would be Meditation Time, Tuesday, Thanksgiving and Praise, Wednesday, worship, Thursday, Time for God, Friday, fearless prayer, Saturday, Sabbath worship and Sunday for Service for God. It would anchor my day with a deliberate objective of meeting with the Lord at a certain time with an intent to focus on the Lord and whether or not I meet the designated title, I would find satisfaction and contentment in a quiet time with Him. Thank you for such a wonderful way to delight in the Lord.

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