This week in yoga, I shared a verse that has become my life’s mantra.
Be still and know that I am God.Psalm 46:10
As a recovering control freak, stillness is where I’ve begun to find healing after years of trying to make things right in my own power.
I believe Jesus calls each of us to make things right but it’s in the moments where I confuse my power-source that I seem to cause more harm than good.
What I mean, is that so often I believe it’s through my own power that I can fix, change, control and help but in reality, it is the power of Christ moving through me that brings any lasting goodness. I know this to be true in my mind, but it can be hard to change my instinctual patterns.
It’s for this reason, that stillness has become one of my daily spiritual practices and I’ve tried to incorporate through meditative prayer in the morning or in the evening or with my favorite final savasna at the end of yoga class.
Stillness has become the one space where I stop doing, changing, fixing, planning or helping and see that God is God and the One moving the world forward (with or without me 😉 )
I am not required in the equation, but I’m most certainty invited and that is where I feel alive.
In Hebrew, “be still” translates to “let go of your grip.”
“Let go of your grip and know that I am God.”
For one like me, who loves to control, “let go of your grip” is a big ask.
I have multiple moments throughout my day where I find myself gripping tightly to heartbreaks, challenges, fears, injustices, relationships or failures that all need fixing.
Yet this promise reminds me that it is God who fixes.
It is God who causes lasting change.
It is God who heals.
It is God who makes things whole.
In letting go of my grip, I envision myself opening my hands and releasing these heartbreaks, challenges, fears, relationships, injustices and failures directly to God.
I’ll admit that when things are deeply challenging, as is the state of our nation right now, I find myself swinging between two extremes. On one side, I power-up, grip extra tightly and try to take things into my own hands. On the other side, I want to give up & stop trying because what can I do that matters anyways?
But I believe God calls us to hold the tension of both responsibility and grace when faced with challenges.
Responsibility means we name and recognize the challenges we are gripping and trying to fix and intentionally place them into His capable hands.
Responsibility says, “Here God, I give these to you.”
Grace says, “I see you my child. I am with you.”
We can trust His grace to move, restore, cover and heal and reveal what is ours to do. It may not be within our time-frame, but His grace is sufficient.
Paul reminds us of this in Scripture when he says:
8 Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. 9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”2 Corinthians 12:8-9
This work of surrender is hard. I have to admit I can’t do it on my own as I hand things over to God (and my critical voices have a hey-day when I can’t make it right on my own!)
But weakness that depends on God creates space for His strength.
In the words of St. Augustine,
“God is always trying to give good things to us, but our hands are too full to receive them.”
May we be still, open our hands and depend on Christ’s assistance as we face challenges in our lives. May we be propelled by grace, not fear. May our weaknesses become gateways for His power to fill us and use us in this broken an hurting world.
To my fellow recovering control-freaks out there, may we have the trust to release and receive and let our open hands become His hands.
Blessings of deepening trust,