“There have been seasons in life where I have felt stripped of my awareness of God’s Presence. Moments when I felt like I couldn’t hear him or find anything to hold on to. Many of us have experienced times in life where we might be surrounded by people—family, friends, or coworkers…yet we feel so alone, and unable to connect. We feel as though we are in a perpetual state of limbo, not sure which way is up, unsure of the way forward.”

40 Days Lighter: A Devotional Journey for Women Determined to Live Free

As I considered this quote from the Day 2 devotion from 40 Days Lighter, titled “In the Stillness”, I am reminded of the heaviness that brings us to the place of needing to hit the pause button. We get so caught up in life’s busy-ness, and at some point we seem to feel like we’ve lost our way. In an effort to preserve our sense of control, we may feel the need to shut things down.

We can find ourselves feeling guilty at this need to pause, feeling like we’ll disappoint someone if we drop everything we’ve been precariously juggling. I’ve had plenty of moments where I almost felt disappointed with myself for not being able to just deal with it all. We tell ourselves things like “this feeling will pass”, “if I can just keep going a little longer”, “other people have it harder and make it work”.

We can even be tempted to call ourselves weak, but the truth is, we’re just human. We weren’t meant for never-ending, 24/7 grind life. There are some moments, when I believe God brings us to a place where we will finally be positioned to hear His voice say: “Peace, be still”. Just as Jesus spoke to the winds and the waves and calmed the storm on the sea in Matthew 8:26. God uses these moments of pause, these moments of stillness to speak sweet peace to our souls.

Going back to our overflowing and overwhelming suitcase full of chaos from Day 1, I believe that in these moments, God desires for us to just EMPTY OUT THE BAG. In the stillness, we can hear the invitation to pour out our hearts, our sorrows, our disappointments, our fears, our doubts. We have the opportunity to empty ourselves of our own tendency towards finding our value in worth in what we do versus who God says we are.

God desires for us to just get still in His presence, to give all of our cares to Him, so that He can fill us with His peace and joy afresh.

Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.

1 Peter 5:7, NLT

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