“Be Still My Soul”

September 9, 2016

Amish team horse 9/2/16
Amish team horse

“Be Still My Soul”

Message Summary: It is my prayer that each of us would find God’s peace and rest as our hearts, minds and souls declare today, Yes, my soul, find rest in God; my hope comes from Him.” God calls us to “be still”. One version translates it as “cease striving” and that’s what I tend to do in my spirit. But, O the joy to truly rest in the presence of God; to know that He is God. “Lord please help me and each reader to experience stillness in our souls today.”

ListenListen to this message on your audio player.

“Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise Him, my salvation” (Psalm 42:5). “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth. The LORD Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress” (Psalm 46:10,11). “Yes, my soul, find rest in God; my hope comes from Him” (Psalm 62:5).

Be still, my soul; the Lord is on thy side.
Bear patiently the cross of grief or pain;
Leave to thy God to order and provide.
In ev’ry change He faithful will remain.
Be still, my soul; thy best, Thy heavenly Friend
Thro’ thorny ways leads to a joyful end.

Yesterday I read a blog article expressing a truth, that I already knew but it was interesting the way the writer presented it. Chelsen Vicari writes an article on the Institute of Religion and Democracy blog titled, “God isn’t Depressed by Politics, Even if I Am”.

Do you ever talk to yourself? I do at times and it annoys Brooksyne a bit, sometimes a lot. We work together in the same office and I find thinking out loud helpful. I suppose she sees it as a sign of aging and doesn’t relish having an old husband.

I also hum sometimes when I eat which is rather peculiar when I think about it. Brooksyne says I do it because I’m very happy when there’s food in my mouth. Generally I find that I’m humming Christian songs whenever Brooksyne points out that I’m humming so maybe that’s not so bad. However I hope I don’t forget myself out in public and hum while I’m eating around others!

Today let’s consider talking to our souls. I think that’s Biblical. That’s what the Psalmist seems to be doing especially in our first daily text. He seems to ask his soul a question and then he proceeds to answer it.

Soul’s question: “Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me?”  “Cast down” seems to describe emotions of despair and despondency while “turmoil within me” describes worry and anxiety.

Soul’s answer: Hope in God; for I shall again praise Him, my salvation.”

In 1752 Katharina Amalia Dorothea von Schlegel wrote the hymn we quote from today over 250 years ago yet her heart’s cry speaks to all generations:

Be still, my soul; thy God doth undertake
To guide the future as He has the past.
Thy hope, Thy confidence let nothing shake;
All now mysterious shall be bright at last.
Be still, my soul; the waves and winds still know
His voice who ruled them while He dwelt below.

The second daily verse is such a spiritual gem.  The entire Psalm needs to be read to get the full sense, but verse 10 is in quotes. The eternal, immutable God is speaking: “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” That statement is not merely a one-time assertion but is absolutely always true. There are those who feel they are above God’s command; their time is too precious, their presence too valuable to take time away from others to be still before the invisible but powerful Almighty God. As we read this verse today, may we hear God’s voice speaking directly to us through sacred Scripture. May it direct us to a quiet place where we are alone with Him.

The latter part of the selection is the Psalmist’s response to this truth followed by his declaration of faith, “The LORD Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.”

The key is being in a state of stillness based upon our knowledge that the One we have submitted to is indeed God and He will be exalted:

Be still, my soul; the hour is hast’ning on
When we shall be forever with the Lord,
When disappointment, grief and fear are gone,
Sorrow forgot, love’s purest joys restored.
Be still, my soul; when change and tears are past,
All safe and blessed we shall meet at last.

It is my prayer that each of us would find God’s peace and rest as our hearts, minds and souls declare today, Yes, my soul, find rest in God; my hope comes from Him.” God calls us to “be still”. I’ve been described as a type-A person and being still is hard for me. One version translates it as “cease striving” and that’s what I tend to do in my spirit. But, O the joy to truly rest in the presence of God; to know that He is God. “Lord please help me and each reader to experience stillness in our souls today.”

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Father, we regularly come to You asking for peace regarding situations that we don’t understand or have no personal ability to change. Way too often troubling circumstances capture our emotions and rob us of the peace promised to those who place their trust in You. Help us not to be tossed about by the changing circumstances of our lives, but to be steadfast as we discipline our mind to be fixed upon You. Only then will we know true life sustaining peace while sojourning here below. Amen.


Vietnamese friend 9/8/16
In one company we visit a lot of Vietnamese people who in most cases have limited English. They work hard and we do what we can to communicate. (We also occasionally have had a Vietnamese pastor friend come through.) Though I, Brooksyne, focus mostly on the women’s work roles I sometimes walk through the machinery where the men work. This Vietnamese man, Dienau always flashes the biggest smile when I walk through and waves most vigorously. Yesterday I told Stephen I wanted to meet him and let him know (using hand and facial expressions) that his shining smile is such a blessing. Stephen took this photo and texted it to my new acquaintance’s cell phone. We find that our other international friends are so pleased to receive a photo we take.

Today’s Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

“Be Still My Soul”   Video   Selah (Traditional version)

“Be Still My Soul”  Video  The Imperials (not the hymn)

“Be Still and Know”  Video  Steven Curtis Chapman

“God isn’t Depressed by Politics, Even if I Am”


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