Tuesday, March 22, 2011

In The Ring, On The Mat

My husband sometimes watches college wrestling on TV.  He enjoys it.  He understands it.  He wrestled in high school and college.  I rarely watch with him.  I don’t enjoy it.  And I don’t understand it.

That’s often how I feel about life.  It’s like a wrestling match or a fight.  There are so many hard things all around me.  I don’t enjoy it.  I don’t understand it.  I want to be out of the ring.  But life often has my friends and me in the ring, in the fight. 

Several years ago I memorized Exodus 14:14, “The Lord will fight for you; you have only to be still”.   I don’t remember the circumstances that surrounded me at the time that would lead me to memorize that verse.  I wish I did.  However, last week I found myself reviewing that verse again.  Then that very same Scripture was used in a testimony I heard during a worship service later that same day.  Hmmmm.  So I went back to Exodus 14 to remind myself of the story. 

Pharaoh had released the Israelites from slavery and Moses had led them through wilderness land to the edge of the Red Sea.  But Pharaoh changed his mind and came after the Israelites with his entire Egyptian army.  The Scriptures record three responses from the Israelites:
  • They were totally afraid ~ understandable.
  • They cried out in terror to God ~ they prayed in desperation.
  • They complained to Moses ~ so human.

Moses had three responses for the Israelites:
  • Don’t be afraid.
  • Stand firm.
  • Watch what God will do. 
The Scripture summarizes this, “The Lord will fight for you; you have only to be still”.

This led to pondering what it looks like to be still.  After all that is my part and I Peter 3 tells me that a gentle and quiet (that seems to be a synonym for being still) in God’s sight is precious. 

Being still means remembering the faithfulness of God toward me in the past.  “… In returning and rest you will be saved; in quietness and trust shall be your strength”.  Isaiah 30:15

Being still means recalling God’s love for me.  “…He will quiet you by His love…”.  Zephaniah 3:17

Being still means to be actively engaged, to be praying and trusting.  “… and the result of righteousness, quietness and trust forever”.  Isaiah 32:17

Being still means recording the works of God with thanksgiving.  “Be still and know that I am God …”.  Psalm 46:10

Being still means not complaining.  “A fool gives full vent …a wise (wo)man quietly holds it back.  Proverbs 29:11

“And I’ll use Pharaoh and his army to put my Glory on display…”  Exodus 14:4 and 17, The Message.   I love that God uses the same words before and after verse 14.  Being still and allowing God to fight puts His Glory on display!

“But the Lord is in his holy temple; let all the earth keep silence before him.”
Habakkuk 2:20

1 comment:

  1. excellent post. And good scripture to memorize.