When Being Still is Uncomfortable, A Different Perspective – Guest Post by Leslie Newman

September 7, 2017

Do you find it hard to be still? Sometimes it follows me right into my prayer life. This month we plan to tackle the meaning and benefits of being still.

Do you find it hard to be still? I certainly do, and it follows me right into my prayer life. Learning about God and serving him comes easy for me.  However, sitting still with him is an area which is a continuous struggle for me. This month we plan to tackle the meaning and benefits of being still with God and ourselves. Hope you will join us as we take this journey.

To kick off our new series, I am excited to introduce you to Leslie Newman who blogs at Journey to Imperfect. It is such an honor to have Leslie share with us her insightful words through her post, When Being Still is Uncomfortable, A Different Perspective.”  After reading her post, I knew I couldn’t keep it to myself and wanted to share it with each of you.


When Being Still is Uncomfortable, A Different Perspective – Guest Post by Leslie Newman

I sat there on my back porch. It was quiet and soft and misty on a peaceful morning in the country. But I was so uncomfortable. I was fidgety and distracted, thinking of all the things I needed to do that day. I couldn’t believe I was having such a hard time being still after all this time.

I had made a commitment this particular week. (You can read about it HERE.) Each day I was going to work on consistently spending a few minutes in complete stillness and quiet, away from all distractions, just being with God. Although I was consistently studying His word and praying, I found that being completely still before Him was very difficult for me.

I was frustrated with myself. For heaven’s sake, I was writing to encourage other women in prayer and quiet time, and yet I was still having so much trouble with parts of that myself.

Inside the stillness, I realized I had taken busy right into my prayer life.

I had gone into my quiet times so focused on the tasks that I should be doing during that time that even there I had neglected the importance of stillness and quietness before God.

It was a hard concept for me to grasp. I had been trying so hard to slow down in other areas of my life, that I had entirely missed the most important one!

I had a couple of choices that day. I could take this new realization and berate myself for not being further along in letting go of busyness, or I can see it as a gift, a transformation point, the beginning of a new perspective. I choose the latter and thought on this verse:

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. Romans 12:2 (NKJV) 

In Romans 12:2, the word transformed comes from the Greek word metamorphoó which means “change after being with.” You may also recognize that this Greek root word is also where we get our English word, metamorphosis.

The word renewing in this verse comes from the Greek word anakainósis which means “completing a process, to make fresh and new.”

If we combine those two key words we find that God is telling us to spend time with Him so that He can help us complete a process that will lead us to fresh and new ways of thinking.

Consider the changes that happen inside a cocoon before the butterfly emerges. The change happens over the course of several weeks, in a hidden and quiet place, so slowly that it can not be observed from the outside. A caterpillar, through a specific growth process and through the power of its creator God, is changed into a beautiful butterfly.

It is much the same in our own lives. If we remove ourselves from daily responsibilities and distractions and spend time alone with God in the stillness and quiet, we are making room in our lives for changes that need to happen. God will do this in the hidden places of the heart.

What God brings forth in the stillness is a gift.

It’s an opportunity to begin a growth process that leads to new perspectives and a renewal of the mind.

Sometimes this kind of renewal and transformation comes soft and easy like the warm spring breezes that crossed my porch that day. More often, it will come to us under much more difficult circumstances.

Regardless, we have a responsibility to answer this high calling.

Let’s make a commitment to step out of being busy and let’s find a few short minutes of quiet in our lives. Let’s spend those moments in stillness before God.

For a few minutes today, let’s spend time being instead of doing.

If we will, we’ll find that there is room for God to show us areas we need to work on, and by His power, our minds can be renewed and our perspectives will be in the better places.

Blessings,

Leslie

Focus Verse

Romans 12:2
If you click on the verse reference above you will be taken to Bible Gateway where you can find other study helps to further your understanding of this passage.

Let’s Talk

Do you have a hard time will stillness like I do? If so, will you make a commitment to join me this week in finding those quiet places where we can work on spending time just being with God?

Let’s Pray

Dear Heavenly Father, We ask you to help us today. It is so hard to stop, to let go of our responsibilities, to get away from all the distractions for a few moments so that we can be still before You. We ask you to clear our minds and help us begin to find you in the stillness and quiet. Open our hearts to what you may be showing us there. Give us courage to follow through, to take what we find and begin to pray over it and work through it. Guide us and lead us always toward You in all areas of our lives. In Jesus name, Amen.

*This post  – When Being Still is Uncomfortable, A Different Perspective,  was shared with permission.  It originally appeared on  Journey to Imperfect.

 

Please meet my friend –

Leslie Newman is a wife, mother, writer, friend, and recovering perfectionist. She spends her days home educating, reading, writing, and hunting wildflowers on her farm in rural Kentucky. Drop by and visit her at her blog, www.journeytoimperfect.com, where she talks about faith, prayer, and letting go of perfect. Leslie can be found on Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

 

 


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27 Comments

  1. Reply

    Connie

    Thank you for sharing this. This is something I really need to work on I get so busy that when I do have a few still moments I just think of what else I need to be doing.
    Thanks so much for sharing at LMML
    Have a great day
    Connie

    1. Reply

      Maree Dee

      Connie,

      I am right there with you. I honestly have to plan my times to be still and acceptance that I will never be caught up. Nice to know I am not alone. Maree

  2. Reply

    sarahgirl3

    OH, how I struggle with just being. I can sit and read or talk to my husband just fine. This weekend, I will start working on being still with Jesus!

    1. Reply

      Maree Dee

      Sarah,
      I think you have a head start if you can already do that with yourself and others. I would love to hear how your weekend with being still with Jesus goes.
      Have a Great Weekend,

      Maree

  3. Reply

    Aimee Imbeau

    Being still…hard to start, but so wonderful when I do! I know when I’ve missed my quiet time with the Lord. It’s not that the day is ‘bad’, I just know in my spirit. Thanks for sharing on Grace and Truth.

    1. Reply

      Maree Dee

      Aimee,

      Yes, it does make a difference in my day too.

      Maree

  4. Reply

    Julia

    Love this post! I struggle regularly with stillness and giving into the temptation to be busy and it’s reassuring to know I am not alone in this.

    1. Reply

      Maree Dee

      Julia,

      No, you are not alone. I never really thought of it as a temptation, but I know you are right. It is so tempting to keep adding things to my already busy schedule. Thank you for stopping by.

      Maree

  5. Reply

    Karen Del Tatto

    Leslie, Thank you so much for this post that convicted and encouraged my heart. It seems as I am getting older, in my empty nest years, now is the time I decide I can’t sit still, but yet when my children were home and I was homeschooling, I savored moments to just be still, especially with the Lord. But as I type these words, I am having a revelation. I think it’s because I still am “fighting” this empty nest phase. Many women look forward to this time, but I miss having children and people around in general. So I think in my busyness I am trying to cover up the quietness.

    Like you, I have rich time with the Lord in Bible study and prayer, but I am not sitting before Him in stillness too often. (And right over my desk where I blog, I have the verse “Be still and know that I am God”)

    I found the insight with the word study so interesting about renewal and so very encouraging.

    Thanks for sharing this edifying post!

    1. Reply

      Maree Dee

      Karen – I found your comment thought provoking as to why we can’t sit still. I am not an empty nester as I still have adult children at home, however, I seem to be busier than ever. I was just thinking the other days how can that be? Funny thing is my friends are the same and they are empty nesters. Thank you for stopping by. Maree

  6. Reply

    Michele Morin

    Thanks for these insights. I have a tendency to fall into the habit of treating prayer like a meeting. God and I are sitting around a table, and I’m sort of giving Him my agenda.
    I’m working on being more of a listener in this “meeting” and talking things over with Him, praying back to Him His own words on a topic, and sitting in the chair of trust. We do tend to take our busy/crazy/bossy selves into our spiritual disciplines. Thanks for pointing this out.

    1. Reply

      Maree Dee

      Michele,
      Oh me too, I can treat my time with God like a meeting or a check off list. I find if I get out in nature or even walk he becomes more like my friend and we converse back and forth. It is just so hard to turn off everything and just listen. I am work in progress. Maree

    2. Reply

      Leslie

      Michele, I love your concept of sitting in the chair of trust! That’s exactly the place we need to be sitting, but it’s a hard place to find sometimes! God has ways of getting us there, though! Thank you for stopping by today!

  7. Reply

    Brenda

    Who’d ever think it’d be so hard to sit still, but it sure can be for me too. During my “summer of rest” this past summer, it took me a while to be okay with quiet and stillness. I needed it, craved it even, but didn’t know how to embrace it. Thankfully, God understands and meets us there. 🙂 Thank you for sharing, Leslie and Maree. ((xoxo))

    1. Reply

      Leslie

      Hi Brenda, it does take some getting used to and I’m still working on it, and like you I am so thankful God meets us right where we are! Blessings!

    2. Reply

      Maree Dee

      Brenda,

      I love what you shared. I bet it was so nice to take a “summer of rest.” I took a week, and it was AMAZING! Yet, so difficult all at the same time.

      Blessings,

      Maree

  8. Reply

    Sarah Geringer

    I have the opposite problem–I sit still too often and need to take action more often. That’s why my one word for 2017 is “Act.” God has taught me to balance stillness with action, and I have a lot more to show for it now. Glad to learn how the other half feels, Leslie!

    1. Reply

      Maree Dee

      Sarah,

      Thank goodness God made us all different. We need each other. I have changed and learned so much from my friends that know how to sit still. We all need balance and spur each other on.

      Have a wonderful day!

      Maree

    2. Reply

      Leslie

      Sarah, it is a balancing act for sure! Thanks so much for stopping by today!

  9. Reply

    Leslie

    Maree, thank you so much for hosting me here today! It’s a pleasure to be part of your series, and I am looking forward to reading more in the coming weeks! I always find your writing so encouraging, Maree, and I love how you understand where I am. : ) Blessings, friend!

    1. Reply

      Maree Dee

      Leslie,

      It is an honor to have your post on my website. I too love your writing and look forward to reading your posts each week.

      Blessings,

      Maree

  10. Reply

    Robinality

    Thank you for sharing Leslie and Maree. I so needed to hear these words. It seems life has been a bit chaotic lately due to Hurricanes (we live in Central Florida), my husband’s appendectomy last week (surprise), and my stomach bug (woohoo). Thank you for sharing the lovely prayer. I’ve been a bit distracted this week. Your beautiful words from God grounded me.

    1. Reply

      Leslie

      Robin, thank you for such kind words. You have had a lot in the past few weeks! I know lots of people are with me in praying for our Florida sisters. You are all on my mind and we’ll be praying for your safety through the storm, and I’m going to say a quick prayer for both you and your husband for recovery from the surgery and illness. God is good and walks with us through the storms! Thank you so much for stopping by today. Blessings!

    2. Reply

      Maree Dee

      Robin, Well it sounds as if your plate is quite full. I am so glad Leslie’s words spoke to you. I want you to know I am praying for you and your family right now as I send this note back to you. Please keep us posted here at Embracing the Unexpected as to your safety and those you love. Blessings, Maree

  11. Reply

    Liz Giertz

    Yup! You nailed me here! I have a hard time with stillness. Too often I put the doing before the being. But when I get them in the right order, my doing is less stressed and feels more blessed. Thanks for this reminder. Heading out to my porch to work on being!

    1. Reply

      Leslie

      Liz, thank you for reading and I love how we are all in the same place at times! It’s good to know I’m not alone in the struggle with placing doing over being. Blessings!

    2. Reply

      Maree Dee

      Liz,
      I love what you said, “But when I get them in the right order, my doing is less stressed and feels more blessed.” Your words ring so true. Blessings, Maree

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