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A Word of Encouragement: Be Stil

What a stormy time of life that we are experiencing!  You may be feeling uncertain, nervous, anxious, fearful and feeling many other confusing emotions.  So, how is God telling us to respond to our circumstance?  Let’s look at two passages from the Bible (God’s words to us) which offer some solace and encouragement.

Mark 4:35-41 Jesus Calms a Storm

 35 On that day, when evening had come, Jesus said to them, “Let us go across to the other side.” 36 And leaving the crowd, they took Jesus with them in the boat, just as he was. And other boats were with him. 37 And a great windstorm arose, and the waves were breaking into the boat, so that the boat was already filling. 38 But Jesus was in the stern, asleep on the cushion. And they woke him and said to him, “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?” 39 And Jesus awoke and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Peace! Be still!” And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. 40 Jesus said to them, “Why are you so afraid? Have you still no faith?” 41 And they were filled with great fear and said to one another, “Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?” [1]

This stormy scene reminded me of some stormy experiences that I have endured on my own sailboat.  I have often thought that it would be a great convenience to have Jesus stand up from where He was sleeping and calm the storm.  I see in the description of the event that the wind was rebuked by Jesus, and then the wind ceased.  The wind and the sea obeyed Him. 

Physical storms are something that we know Jesus can control.  But what about those storms that occur in our hearts – fear and anxiety?  Can Jesus control these storms?  Will we let him?

Another place where this rebuke --” Be still” -- is used, is found in Psalm 46:10.

“Be still and know that I am God.

I will be exalted among the nations,

I will be exalted in the earth!” [2]

The Psalm reveals God’s sovereignty over creation and mankind.  It reminds us that, as suffering occurs (physically, emotionally, and mentally), God is our refuge and strength and with Him nothing is shaken.  Psalm 46:10 is a rebuke to us where God commands us to “Be Still”.  Often it is the storm within us that overwhelms us.  Like the wind and the sea, we must obey Jesus and “Be still”, knowing that He is God and everything that is happening around us will bring glory to Him.  He “will be exalted”.  D. Kidner describes “Be still” in this way:  “Be still … is not, in the first place, comfort for the harassed but a rebuke to a restless and turbulent world: ‘Quiet!’—in fact, ‘Leave off!’ It resembles the command to another raging sea: ‘Peace! Be still!’ And the end in view is stated in terms not of man’s hopes but of God’s glory.”4  It is important for us to understand that by submitting to God’s rebuke to us to “Be still”, our heart storms will become calm just as the wind and sea became calm.  Let us exalt God in our circumstance and not focus on the fear around us.  Let us bring Him glory by trusting Him and acknowledging Him in all things.  He will direct our paths.  Let us “be still” and know His peace through Jesus Christ.  Let us “be still” so we can love God and love our neighbour.  If we are His and His alone, we have nothing to fear.  Praise God that He is sovereign and in control of our future! 


be still…

and know…

that He is God.


[1] The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (Mk 4:35–41). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.

[2] The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (Ps 46:10). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.

[3] Barry, J. D., Mangum, D., Brown, D. R., Heiser, M. S., Custis, M., Ritzema, E., … Bomar, D. (2012, 2016). Faithlife Study Bible (Ps 46:10). Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.

[4] Kidner, D. (1973). Psalms 1–72: an introduction and commentary (Vol. 15, p. 194). Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press.


Categories: Encouragement