My eyes are closed. The frantic echos and dizzying demands of the past few weeks is silenced. The pressure from my headphone is the only thing that reminds me that I am still present on this earth. Hillsong pours out into my ears and into my soul, and I find myself- clasping a cooling mug of tea, and silently singing along with the lyrics as they resonate in my spirit. And in this moment, of worship without words, I am lost in the vastness of God. There is a heaviness to God’s touch, like the pressure before a summer storm. And yet, also a gentleness, similar to that of a sweet summer breeze in the stillness of a stifling day, that lifts your hair and teases the wildflowers to dance…
And then- my dog barks, a visitor has stopped by, a door slams, and suddenly, this fragile state I was in shatters, and my peace with it.
This is basically how my life goes, and I’m sure I’m not the only one.
I have this constant issue with being still, with abiding in the presence of God and surrendering my entire focus to prayer, to just being with God in the moment. Curling up with my bible and putting on some worship music for an hour is easy, but silencing my mind and muting my thoughts seems like an impossibility. It’s easier said than done.
With a senior year to survive, a part time job, volunteering positions, post secondary, family obligations, and endless deadlines to worry about- I can barely breathe. Combined with an overactive imagination, and a tendency to over think things, a deadly forecast is in store, and my thoughts become a tormented storm. If I step into the tempest of my ravenous thoughts alone, I will be ripped into shreds.
But God hasn’t made us to face the storm alone.
He is the eye of the storm.
Jesus doesn’t just sit outside of our funnel cloud and wait for us to find our way out of it- instead, He becomes the eye of the storm, the center of it all. Even in the midst of trial, hopelessness, busyness, everything going wrong or everything spinning out of control, remember that in even in the most fierce storms there is a pillar of peace, a stronghold. God is the peace, the stillness, the calm of whatever is happening in our lives. And he promises to walk through it all with us. When Jesus died on the cross for us, He promised us freedom, He promised us healing, and He promised us He’d weather the storm with us. Besides, the sun is much more beautiful after a storm, don’t you think?
While I was writing this and listening to some worship, I noticed that most of the songs I was listening to had referred to God as Emmanuel, meaning “God is with us”. I had forgotten what that name meant, but I can’t afford to forget it now. God is truly with us, through it all, there is nothing we can do, say, think or feel that will separate us from that truth.
“Seek the LORD and his strength, seek his face continually.” 1 Chronicles 16:11