ArticlesChristian Living

How Can We Make Time to be Still?

Has anyone noticed that we are in a season where everyone is moving so fast? There is this weight and expectation placed on people, especially youth and young people, to have it all figured out at a certain age. If you don’t have it figured out, you’re seen as a “wasteman”, irresponsible or not worthy. We’re so focused that there is no time to just pause. So how can we make time to be still?

Everyone is hustling and working so hard to meet up with the expectations placed on us. We have become so focused on making more money and meeting our goals, that we’ve forgotten how to pause sometimes and live in the moment.

Why are we in such a hurry?

From the moment we begin education to the moment we retire, there is this expectation placed on us. We are expected to graduate with good grades, get a job, get married, and have children. The man-made timeline may differ for men and women, but at the end of the day, the pressure exists.

It’s funny because the pressure never leaves. There is always something new to push for, a new goal to attain and a new dream to chase. Think about it, there is always something to pray for or ask for. Even if we all have different goals and dreams, we’re always steadfastly working towards them without taking a breather or pausing.

We don’t want to disappoint the people around us, and we don’t want to be pitied or made fun of. It’s either hustle now, so you can meet or exceed the standards, or be thought of as less.

There’s no problem with having dreams and having goals, the issue begins when we forget to pause and be still.

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Why do we need to be still?

It’s important that we take a minute to rest because we follow a model and that model is God.

And on the seventh day, God ended His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done.

Genesis 2:2

The God who created us took a break. He is omnipotent, omniscient, and omnibenevolent, yet he took a break. God rested on the seventh day. We may want to argue that God finished His work before He rested, but God’s work is still not finished. God is with us daily and listens to us daily. It is a continuous thing for God in the same way life is continuous for us.

We live in a world where everybody hits different milestones. In the process of trying to achieve certain goals, it’s very important to enjoy the moment and live. Because in the process of rushing to achieve, we lose out on life and the gifts God has in store for us.

Rushing and working can also cause lethargy. When you are constantly on the move, it leaves you feeling weak physically, mentally, and even spiritually. Your body needs rest, in the same way your mind needs rest. There’s absolutely no real benefit in running yourself ragged trying to achieve a goal or meet a standard while missing out on life.

It is useless for you to work so hard from early morning until late at night, anxiously working for food to eat; for God gives rest to his loved ones.

Psalms 127:2
A pace of praye

Staying still in the place of prayer

It’s so important to slow down sometimes because it also affects you in the place of prayer. I once attended a sermon where the pastor explained communion with God. He explained that when we worship God in spirit and in truth, God’s manifest presence appears. However, the beauty isn’t just in worship but in sitting at the table with God. To sit at the table, you have to be silent and be still in the presence of God. There’s a place you get to in worship where you feel the manifest presence of God and the next thing isn’t to ask for things, but to stay silent so you can hear God speak and feel God move.

Prayer isn’t a one-way street – it’s communication with God. This means that God is supposed to speak. How often do you leave room for God to speak? Do you do all the talking? Are you always active mentally and physically in the place of prayer? It’s so important to pause. Never be afraid to take a minute and just listen. Listen to hear what God is saying, listen to hear what He’s asking you to do.

In the hustle and bustle of life, we can get carried away. This means we forget to give God time to speak to us. Instead we make our requests known to God, but never take the time to just be in God’s presence and listen for His voice.

Sometimes we even forget to spend quality time with God and then make God less of a priority compared to the goals we’re chasing. In the midst of Jesus’ service to God, Jesus took time out to pray.

But Jesus Himself would often slip away to the wilderness and pray.

Luke 5:16

The wilderness was a place of seclusion and stillness and the Bible shows that Jesus often left the crowd and people to pray (Matthew 14:23; Luke 6:12; Luke 11:1). Jesus is the prime example of how to live and the model that Jesus left for us was one that involved pausing and taking time to pray.

What do you gain from being still?

  • Strength: When you become still, you regain your strength. You gain physical, mental, and spiritual strength by leaving the fast pace of everything and just being still in the moment. There’s so much spiritual strength in being still in the presence of God because God’s presence rejuvenates you (Isaiah 40:29).
  • Knowledge: Being still is a time to listen to what God has to say. “Be still and know that I am God” (Psalms 46:10). In your stillness, you learn more. You’re able to analyze your progress and see the mistakes you’ve made. Your heart becomes open to what God is teaching you.
  • Reprioritization: It gives you the opportunity to evaluate what you’ve made your priority. Your relationship with God should be your number one priority and if being fast-paced has shifted that, being still allows you to change things. You can use the time to make God your priority,

Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness and all other things shall be added unto you.

Matthew 6:33

When you prioritize God, everything else falls into place.

How can we make time to be still?

You have to make a decision to be still. Being still takes discipline. It’s very easy to be carried away with the things of life, especially social media, bills, worries, and the cares of life. Staying still can be a great challenge.

Therefore, you have to set the time to be still. You could decide to wake up at a certain time in the morning , so you can have your quiet time with God and also relax your mind. It could also be at night. You could choose to have a day where you focus solely on God and listen to what God has to say while staying away from anything that can distract you, e.g. social media, your phone, tv, etc.

If you’re ever lost and don’t know what to do, just ask the Holy Spirit to help you. Jesus says we should lay our burdens on Him (Psalms 55:22, Matthew 11:28-30). When you get carried away with the cares of life, you lose the purpose that God has set before you.

It’s always better to make room to be still, both in God’s presence and in our daily lives.

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Esther Babatunde
Esther is a full-time child of God who works as an Investigator. She owns a blog where she talks about her personal journey to faith, confidence, and love. She is passionate about showing God's love to the world and drawing people to faith in Christ.