Letter: Take time to stop, look and listen

Published 8:17 pm Friday, May 1, 2020

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Psalms 46 reads, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” As we have sheltered in place for several weeks, the effects have been evident in many areas of our lives. Most of us are experiencing this for the first time. It has definitely slowed us down. This has given us time for reflection of our habits, needs and wants. It has given us time to reconnect and given us opportunities to press the restart button. Even in nature, we see the effects in various ecosystems in air, water and land. In just a few weeks, we can identify newness that is emerging as the result of simply sheltering in place.

Could it be that God has allowed this to give us the opportunity to be still? Could it be that nature itself has needed a break from the nonstop movement of humankind and our many vehicles? Could it be that our culture has so pressed the bounds of always having to be bigger and better that it overloaded the global system? Could it be there are even more areas where we could be still and take pause? And what would those further steps render for us in terms of benefit?

Former generations lived on much less and seemed to enjoy much more in terms of family and basic needs. They seemed to know how to identify needs from wants. They knew how to practice patience and didn’t rely on instant gratification. They worked hard, nurtured the land, saved for rainy days and did not overcome themselves with debt. They also seemed to learn how to play fair and get along well with others. In today’s society, there seems to be so much pressure of immediacy of our wants. There seems to be so much unrest of spirit and animosity for those of differing opinions. The political arena is extremely polarized and tends to demonize anyone who dares differ from us; insomuch that we know to never discuss religion or politics at family gatherings.

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It seems God has dealt us a favor in helping us stop and consider our ways. It seems he wants us to pause and take a fresh look at him and perhaps the people and things that should matter the very most. I love how Psalms 46:10 reads in the Message Bible, “Step out of the traffic! Take a long, loving look at me, your High God, above politics, above everything.” I’d like to encourage you today to stop, look and listen. Pause long enough to hear the birds sing. Pause long enough to really listen to your loved ones. Pause long enough to hear your own heartbeat, and be still and know that he is God. I love you, and I’m in your corner. If you need prayer or someone to talk to, please give me a call at 507-473-0376.

George Marin


Grace Christian Church