3 Ways to Practice Stillness

We become what we practice.

If we practice rushing through our days, thinking activity is the solution to our problems, we become our own greatest solution…and, for all practical purposes, our own god. Ouch.

Psalm 46:10 says, “Be still and know that I am God.” It is only in stillness that we can grasp the God-ness of God. It is in stillness that we submit to the God-ness of God. There are many benefits to practicing this spiritual discipline, especially in that it allows us to know God. {Check out these 5 Ways Stillness can helps us Know God.} It’s important to cultivate and practice stillness in our lives and make it part of our days, weeks, and year.

What does it mean to be still?

Check out these 3 Ways to Practice Stillness, then incorporate them in to your quiet time!

Psalm 46:10 says, “Be still and know that I am God.”

The word “still” in this verse is a verb. Funny enough, stillness is something we do. It is a practice, something that takes effort and intentionality on our part.

The Hebrew term for “still” is raphah and literally means to sink down, relax, let drop, or be disheartened.

 

“Stillness is the activity of letting go, relaxing, letting down your guard, relinquishing control, and sitting with all the shortcomings and undone things in your life.” Arabah Joy

 

No wonder we don’t like it so much, eh?

In short, you could define stillness as doing NOTHING.

Pssstt… did you realize there’s a verb for doing nothing? Yes, my friend, there is such a thing and it’s called being “still.”

 

Now let’s look at how we can work this discipline into the rhythm of our lives.

3 Simple Ways to Practice Stillness

Do you know how powerful the spiritual discipline of stillness can be? Read these 3 ways to practice stillness and incorporate these in your quiet time!

 

1. Make it a daily discipline. 

  • Choose a time and place for practicing stillness every day. Stillness is best done in solitude so be sure your time and place is secluded.
  • Set a timer for ten minutes.
  • Physically be still in your quiet place.
  • Quiet and still your mind.
  • Sit with your disappointments. Feel the reality of your limitations, letdowns and everything that’s undone. It really is okay!
  • Offer this time to the Lord in faith. Tell Him you wish to deliberately acknowledge His sovereignty and control over your life. Invite Him to reveal Himself to you in the stillness and give Him the floor.
  • Wait for the Lord. Don’t go into your time with an agenda. Simply sit before Him. If worries and thoughts take your mind down a rabbit trail, simply tell yourself (gently!) this is not the time for that and again invite the Lord to speak.

Do you need practical tips on how to practice stillness? Try these 3 ways to practice stillness in your life.

2. Practice a true Sabbath each week.

For Christians, Sabbath means not only taking a day off from work and resting, but spiritually resting from our striving as well. Once a week, we intentionally acknowledge the finished work of Christ on our behalf. Here are some ideas to practice moving into stillness by taking the Sabbath as a day of rest.

  • Don’t schedule any work related activities
  • Completely unplug (yes, it is possible!)
  • Plan ahead for meals
  • Attend worship
  • Limit activities that are just for “pleasing yourself” (it’s okay to be inactive!)
  • Feed your soul with extra time in God’s Word
  • Take a nap!

The spiritual discipline of practicing stillness can make a huge difference in your quiet time. Read these 3 ways to practice stillness and try incorporating them into your quiet time.

3. Take a monthly personal retreat.

I’ve found it helpful to find stillness by planning down times throughout the year. Most of the time, I do these at home, so don’t feel you have to get away to take a retreat! This is a time set aside for reflection, evaluation, and prayer. I use this as a time to NOTICE… what I’m feeling, how I may be disconnected with God or others, to my physical surroundings, to nature, to life.

Here are some ideas for holding a personal retreat.

  • Plan for at least 4 hours (up to 24 hours) of solitude and quiet.
  • Unplug!
  • Take a journal. Pay attention to your internal state. Jot down what you discover. Do the same with your externals.
  • Have a plan for reading (the Bible and/or other materials

For a guide on how to best plan and conduct a personal retreat, check out our DIY Spiritual Retreat Kit here.

By working stillness into your day, week, and year, you’ll not only find more white space in your mind and heart, but also live in light of God’s character and presence in your life. You’ll be more quick to notice how He shows up in your life. You’ll experience a deeper intimacy with Him as you rely on His strength and trust in His sovereignty.

How about you? How do you practice stillness in your life? Have you found it helpful? Share your thoughts in the comments!

 

Want More? Here is a 30-Day Scripture writing plan for Quietness and Stillness.

Psalm 46:10

Isaiah 30:15

Isaiah 26:3

Psalm 37:7

Psalm 23

Psalm 62:5

Psalm 62:1

Habakkuk 2:20

Exodus 14:14

Mark 6:31

Luke 6:12

Psalm 40:1

Psalm 131:1-2

Psalm 27:14

Isaiah 40:31

I Kings 19:12

Psalm 5:3

Mark 4:39

Luke 10:41-42

Psalm 130:5

Hebrews 4:9

Zephaniah 3:17

Isaiah 37:16

I Thessalonians 4:11

II Chronicles 20:17

Psalm 4:4

Exodus 20:8-11

Exodus 33:14

Psalm 127:1-2

I Peter 3:3-4

 

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5 Comments

  1. Really inspirational! Since the beginning of this I am going through tough times and I have lost my stillness. These tips will help me for sure. Thanks Arabahjoy !

  2. Simplicity and stillness go hand in hand. Living with less stuff gives me more time and that means more time for God – Bible Study, prayyer, stillness and service.

  3. Great guide to stillness when i have one million issues to live up to. I surely will let go and let God… thanks Arabah Joy

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