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You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in You.  Isaiah 26:3 A warning in advance-in...

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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

A place and a prayer of quiet…

There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
    the holy place where the Most High dwells. 
 God is within her, she will not fall; 
Psalms 46:4-5 (NIV)

Monday I began seeking peace as part of a 30 day challenge.   (That makes 3 challenges for me at the moment. I’m a goal-oriented girl, and appreciate a start and a finish process with an accomplishment.) I’m not at war with anyone or anything, just seeking a deeper more soulful resting place. I want to press in.  I want to press in and stay in.  It’s time to move my world a little closer to God (it’s a process).  We Christians can get a little weirded out by meditation.  It seems a little too “new agey,” a little foreign. We need to understand our history, and get over ourselves.  Meditation is just another way to pray. 

I spend time ever morning(and at other times throughout the day) in meditative devotion (prayer). Sometimes I'm talking, speaking words of thanks and praise, sometimes I'm just listening to the silence awaiting a Word that might come.  In reading about Christian meditation, a prayer of quiet "is regarded by all writers on mystical theology as one of the degrees of contemplation...As the name implies the prayer of quiet is that in which the soul experiences an extraordinary peace and rest, accompanied by delight or pleasure in contemplating God as present.” From www.newadvent.org

I’m always talking about noise. I am noisy (a chatterer). I have a noisy dog, noisy children, a noisy house. I embrace my noise as the soundtrack of my life, but with age, I appreciate and cultivate quiet. It is a welcome change from sound. Distinct. Different.  The quiet is also a metaphor for the noise that creeps into my soul. Doubt. Fear. Anxiety. When I seek peace, I am being quiet and still, so that He might move. A place of prayer and quiet is for me sacred surrender.

When I envision David’s river in the 46th Psalm, I see the place of my sacred surrender.  According to the commentary at www.bibleinsong.com,
A river is a beautiful figure of God's protection. It represents a state of calm security in sharp contrast with the wild ocean of v.3. The second stanza (vs. 4-7) depicts the peace of the city of God, while all that is outside her walls is in a state of uproar. Streams probably picturing canals leading from the river to water gardens and dwellings. God's protection is dispensed freely through innumerable channels. The streams shall give the city of God great occasion for rejoicing and thanksgiving…With God being in the midst of the city it has a firm or sure foundation. God will help and protect the city at dawn when the morning makes its appearance.

There is a river. God is in her midst. She shall not be moved. She shall not fall. That is the blessing and the assurance of Psalms 46. God has not folded a mantle of calm across the world; it’s still loud, crazy, rude, fast, teeming, overflowing with LOUD.  However, there is a river. God is in her midst. She shall not be moved. She shall not fall. I want to go there. I want to abide there. By Your Grace, Lord, it shall be done, Selah and Amen. And as I exhale, after breathing in the quiet, I am again assured that God is good.

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