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Cease Striving

“Cease striving and know that I am God.”—PSALM 46:10 NASB

In the midst of trouble and the chaos of daily living, our souls cry out for quiet, for peace, for calm. We are weak, pulled in every direction by our responsibilities and by the expectations of others. Often we forget that there is great power in quiet. In fact, our souls demand a zone of silence. Our God calls us to cease striving against all that would distract us from Him, to be still and learn to depend on Him to straighten out the tangles of our lives.

Many of the churches of post-Reformation Germany lapsed into ritualism after the vibrant change that had characterized the reformers. To counteract this, the Pietist movement emphasized the need of being quiet before God in order to experience His peace. One of the more popular hymns to come from that movement emphasized the reality of the Christian life versus external show. According to Katharina von Schlegel, the writer of “Be Still, My Soul,” recognizing who God is and what He can do goes a long way toward calming our inner spirit:

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.

Father, You desire the best for me. Today may I cease striving against the trouble and turmoil and allow You to guide my future as You have my past.

Adapted from

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