More Thoughts on the Quiet Life

Weaned child

“Surely I have calmed and quieted my soul, like a weaned child with his mother; like a weaned child is my soul within me” (Ps. 131:2, NKJV).

On Wednesday we talked about cultivating a quiet heart, a heart at rest even in the midst of a frenzied world. But what does that look like? Here are a few thoughts on that.

Although I don’t currently live in the U.S., I have an incalculable store of memories of American Christmases. (Also, every two or three years, we as a family visit my parents in northwest Indiana for the holidays). If ever there is a hectic, chaotic time to be had, it’s in U.S. retail stores as the 25th of December draws near. One memory that sticks out is one of the times that I headed into the fray that crazy week before the holiday. Walking very slowly through the bustling crowds, I was purposefully taking in every moment. Surrounded by agitated energy and rush, I was enveloped in peace.

I thoughtfully took my time making my selections, enjoying the cheerful Christmas decor. Humming along to the seasonal music playing, I felt Holy Spirit’s presence with me. His supernatural peace made me impervious to the hustle and stress carried by so many individuals that swarmed around me.

I stood patiently in line afterwards, contented even though the wait was long. When my turn finally came, I caught the harried cashier’s eye and smiled at her. My cheery interaction with her was obviously welcome, as it followed harsh, impatient comments by previous customers. I could see her shoulders relax some even as she remarked to me about how late she would be working. I left the store knowing that Jesus through me had made a difference in her evening.

This is a micro-picture of the whole of my life. Wherever I go, I carry God’s peace with me. Due to how often it happens, I have grown accustomed to people telling me that they like to be around me because my company is soothing. I don’t share this to brag on myself. I didn’t produce any of this. The Holy Spirit did it. This is His fruit. Rather, my sharing is for the purpose of invitation. I want to invite you, too, into a lifestyle centered in God’s rest.

Take a look at our verse for today. “I have calmed and quieted my soul.” Did you know that we can calm and quiet our own souls? The Hebrew here literally means, “I have made level and made quiet my soul.” You and I can cultivate a quiet inner life with level, even, steady emotions. How? The key is in the preceding verse:

“O Lord, my heart is not proud, nor my eyes haughty; nor do I involve myself in great matters, or in things too difficult for me” (Ps. 131:1, NASB).

Hmm… Great matters. Things too difficult for me. What could the Psalmist be alluding to? Could it be all of those factors in your life that you have no control over? I believe so. I believe this Scripture is referring to lofty questions like:

  • What if your boss doesn’t want to keep you on any more?
  • Will your spouse will ever change?
  • Will you ever find someone wonderful who wants to marry you?
  • What if someone precious to you dies?
  • Could nuclear war happen in your lifetime?
  • What will become of you in your old age?

All of these are matters too difficult for you and me. Trying to control them, according to this verse, would be prideful; haughty even. Trying to manage them on our own strength and wisdom would be putting ourselves into the position that belongs rightfully to God.

He invites us to do the opposite. He beckons us into the place of a weaned child. And what of that symbolism? A weaned child is one who has been fully satisfied, and learned to deeply trust. The child has “no thought for the ‘morrow.” He has not even one fleeting doubt that he will be always cared for. His head is peacefully nestled into his mother’s neck in absolute, contented abandon.

Let your Abba figure out tomorrow. Don’t concern yourself with the things too difficult for you. Daddy’s got them. Nestle into His arms.

Calm and quiet your soul.

************************************************

Do you make cultivating the fruit of peace an active pursuit?

 

26 thoughts on “More Thoughts on the Quiet Life

  1. Oh, I think we have to, if we are to endure an increasingly weird world. And we, by ourselves, cannot change the weirdness. But if we, as you described, allow the Spirit’s peace to flow through us, we are far better equipped to withstand difficult times and make a difference in the lives of those around us. Back in the day, I spent time as that department store clerk and I guarantee we were grateful for every kind word. “Love one another, as I have loved you. . . . .”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. To be honest, sometimes worrying is always in the midst of the day to day life. As a humans I always tend to put everything in God’s hands. That is why every single day I asked God to let the Holy Spirit remind me to calm down and avoid to worry too much. Prayer is always the answer.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Beautiful Thank you. Reminds me of the wonder PRAYER OF SERENITY.
    In 2019 it is still a gem, truthful and very valuable.
    Abba my Father,
    Help me to accept the things I cannot change.
    Change the things I can and live
    with your Wisdom to KNOW the difference.

    All things unto you.
    a-men.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. This piece is Goooood! A few spontaneous things that came to mind.

    A small excerpt from James Allen’s – Eight pillars to Prosperity chapter 2 Energy-

    “There is no greater baby than the blustering boaster. Physically a man, he is but an infant mentally, and having no strength to anything, and no work to show, he tries to make up for it by loudly proclaiming what he has done, or could do.

    “Still waters run deep,” and the great universal forces are inaudible. Where calmness is, there is the greatest power. Calmness is the sure indication of a strong, welltrained, patiently disciplined mind. The calm man knows his business, be sure of it. His words are few, but they tell. His schemes are well planned, and they work true, like a well balanced machine. He sees a long way ahead, and makes straight for his object. ”

    ** A link that has all his works – Free- Extraordinary work: http://james-allen.in1woord.nl/

    James allen was the second spontaneous thought, 1st one was Psalms 91

    7 Though a thousand fall at my side, though ten thousand are dying around me, the evil will not touch me. 8 I will see how the wicked are punished, but I will not share it. 9 For Jehovah is my refuge! I choose the God above all gods to shelter me. 10 How then can evil overtake me or any plague come near?

    Amazing how quickly in my life I am overcome by fear, but you know when that is? When I am sinning, and living a sinful life, fears on every side, engulfed by the darkness, fear abounds in darkness. When I remove myself from practicing sin, and walk in the light of God’s presence… my conscience is clear, I walk with my back straight, head foward, instead of hung in shame, and the darkness retreats to the edge perimeter of the light. Amen!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Again, thank you so much, Ben! I’m once again truly, truly blessed by your sharing. Those words by James Allen are powerful! I just now bookmarked that site and am looking forward to exploring more as the Holy Spirit leads. And, He just used you to confirm His word to me! Because He was already speaking Psalm 91 into my spirit in the last couple of days, and that part specifically even. So, thank you for allowing Him to speak through you! I am thankful!!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. By the way, I think I shared this with you before.. The reason we have a shadow is because of our impurities… You wont find Gods shadow, because he is pure light. Does pure light have a shadow? How can it? It cannot unless the light beam upon something unpure causing a shadow.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Dear Sister In Christ,

    Byways to Blessedness, Eight Pillars, Life Triumphant. Out from the heart. I’ve made it a practice to read a chapter a day, study it, and write it. One morning as I was going over one chapter, I was moved to share it. So I grabbed a highlighter, to highlight the important pieces, but never did highlight a single sentence.. I put the highlighter down and thought to myself “there is no point, every single sentence is true and powerful!” wow.

    There is no other work like THE LIVING BIBLE. Nothing on earth competes with it. It stands alone.

    Works by one man, James Allen ranks at the top. Thank you for checking it out and may it bless you in many ways. Thank you for your comment. It means the world. That’s all we can ask for and hope for, is it not? That the work we do, that it helps others grow in faith, hope, and knowledge. As we reciprocate the kindness extended to us in our lifetime. How many people have taken time to teach us, lend to us, show us, explain to us? All we are doing is returning that blessing in the name of Jesus Christ.

    ****
    Dear sister in Christ, Ms.Jennifer Arimborgo,

    I have been moved to write the following. It began as a short prayer to petition God to continue helping you, to continue helping me do His Will.

    The dedication and determination you have demonstrated in striving to serve and follow Jesus Christ has brought blessings upon you.

    I am tired, completely exhausted, and full of pain, but I continue forward fully motivated by the love of Christ within me. The scripture says, for when I am weak, I am strong. I am strong because of Christ who liveth in me. I write to share the glorious truth about God. Although I am a sinner, full of ups and downs, failures, disappointments, and endless mistakes I press on, electing to work, pray, learn, change help, give, encourage, defend, and most importantly above all else – TRUST.

    I TRUST in the words of Almighty God. I trust His Guidance. I have learned through the grace of God where to place my TRUST, and it is placed upon HIS WORDS and HIS PROMISES.

    I TRUST the WORDS of CHRIST JESUS as He says in John 14:

    “In solemn truth I tell you, anyone believing in me shall do the same miracles I have done, and even greater ones, because I am going to be with the Father. You can ask Him for anything, using my name, and I will do it, for this will bring praise to the Father because of what I, the Son, will do for you. Yes, ask anything, using my name, and I will do it!”

    Father, of All Light and Creation,

    We thank you for every single thing you have done. We thank you for every single thing you are doing in our lives at present. We thank you for all the things you have already prepared ahead. We thank you for every day we have lived and every moment whether painful or joyful. We thank you for your mercy and patience. We thank you for showing compassion and kindness, instead of accusation. We thank you for correcting, convicting, and punishing, for all you do, every act, every word spoken, abounds with wisdom and goodness. Thank you for being the sole irrefutable Truth, The Way, The Life and The Light of The World. Thank you for being the man that no other man could be. Thank you for revealing yourself to the hearts of all that earnestly seek you. Thank you for all that you do, day in, day out, from the conception of eternity through the eternal continuation of eternity.

    May The Light Of Your Son, Jesus Christ, radiate into our lives , our work, and into every aspect so that we may continue growing every day in Truth, Knowledge, Wisdom, Faith, Power, Hope, Endurance, Perseverance, Creativity, Skill, Discernment, Patience, Love, Generosity, Harmony, Worship, Sight, Vision, Clarity, Sharpness, Focus, Determination, Vocabulary, Accuracy, Dependability, Diversity, Composition, Capacity, Humility, Ingenuity, Insight, Language, Communication, Expression, Perception, Energy, and Vibrancy. We ask for these things based upon the Words Of Truth spoken by Your Son, not to bring us glory nor reason to boast, but to bring you Praise, Honor, and Glory, for what the Son shall do for those who believe in Him, and full TRUST in HIM by asking in His name.

    Therefore,

    All these things we pray and ask for in the name of Christ Almighty, Amen.

    No need to respond sister. It’s been a blessing for me to write, work, and petition God. I know it’s for a reason, He has all the answers. We just follow His lead. Glorrrrryyyy!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Amen and amen! An absolutely beautiful prayer, my brother. And it is precious beyond words to His heart. I am truly grateful.

      (And by the way, I love the Living Bible too! A relatively new translation that has come out has also blessed me a lot — are you familiar with The Passion Translation?)

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Amen, TLB- The Living Bible paraphrased is great for teaching and sharing because its common straightforward middle school level English. I love editorial comments mentioned in the preface. The one thing I dislike about it, is the green hard cover. So I customized mine. Check out my post entitled “Seek me and Ye shall find me” under Truth category and there is two pics of it. Customizing our Bibles is important, it adds the personal touch and experience that makes it our own and valuable. I want to get a one of a kind leather cover crafted by hand, With a beautiful Eagle on the front. The Lord Spirit once, landed on my right shoulder in the form of an Eagle. It was incredible, majestic, powerful, scary too, yet I knew it wasnt going to hurt me, still having a mighty eagle with talons, beak, on your shoulder makes one think, ‘if this Eagle wants to it might take my eye out.’ I havent come across the Passion Translation, thank you for suggesting. I shall take a look.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. You are most welcome, Ben! I’d love to hear your thoughts on it. And that makes sense about TLB. I’d enjoy checking out your post, but I haven’t been able to find your blog. Would you please send me the link?

        Like

      3. You are most welcome, Ben! I’m glad you found it a helpful one too. You are so right that God knows how to get His point across, and that He likes to speak in language we will understand 🙂

        Like

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