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Be still
Sarah Habben
by Sarah Habben
August 8, 2020

As Pharaoh’s gleaming chariots approached, fear struck the Israelites. Voices clanged like alarm bells: “Why?” “What have you done?” “Didn’t we say . . . ?” “It would have been better if . . . !” Moses spoke over their panic: “Do not be afraid. Stand firm. . . . The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still” (Exodus 14:13,14).

This week, my Caribbean neighborhood is under a wind advisory. Bathers and small-craft fishermen are urged to stay ashore to avoid the 10-14 foot waves. The wind blusters and gusts and whips the palm branches, hurling dust through the windows and debris across the yard. Blow. Blow. BLOW. I wish I could holler, “Be still!” and force the fretful wind to cower like a chastened dog.

My worry is a lot like that wind. It buffets and blows and sweeps away patience. Those around me get sucked into the tempest. My children snipe and stomp and argue. I know it’s because I started it.

God should pin me down and thunder, “BE STILL!” Silence my foolish fears with an almighty “Shaddaaaap!” 

But that’s not how God deals with our doubts—not in ancient times nor today. Isn’t God’s love mysterious? It defies logic: giving up a beloved Son in order to adopt a surly family. It defies limits: never stretching to a snapping point like old elastic. God’s mighty love fights for us, silencing Satan and sin and death. God’s gentle love forgives.

When the winds of worry rise, I can shelter in that love—and be still.

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