Sunday, January 30, 2022

Quiet: Be Still My Soul

 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." 

Living in a time when noise of every imaginable kind seems to continually bombard us,  I’m thinking about what it means to keep a quiet heart. It isn't possible to control the circumstances of our lives. There can be turmoil and tumult deep inside even when we’ve managed to quiet things around us. In these moments, as we trust in the goodness of God, we will find a place of peace and rest. 

When I remember who He is and what He has promised to do, my heart slows its frantic pace. Though circumstances may still rage around me, there is a reservoir of peace and a place of quiet deep within.

This hymn speaks so eloquently the things I want to say. It was written by Katharine von Schlegel centuries ago. There is little known about this German woman. She was born in 1696 and died in 1768. 

The Christian Church had grown stagnant during the Middle Ages, and with the revival of evangelism came the renewal of hymn singing. New hymns were written which were filled with piety, Christian experience and faithfulness to the Scriptures. This is one such hymn.

As a little side-note, it was the favorite hymn of Olympic athlete Eric Liddell. His refusal to run on the Sabbath was documented in the movie "Chariots of Fire." During the second World War Eric, serving as a missionary in China, was taken captive. He taught this song to the other prisoners in the camp.

Eric died of a brain tumor during his captivity. The story is told that while he lay dying he asked that this song be played. The beautiful words surely must have blessed and quieted his heart. 

Be Still My Soul

Be still, my soul: the Lord is on thy side.

Bear patiently the cross of grief or pain.

Leave to thy God to order and provide;

In every change, He faithful will remain.

Be still, my soul: thy best, thy heavenly Friend

Through thorny ways leads to a joyful end.

Be still, my soul: thy God doth undertake

To guide the future, as He has the past.

Thy hope, thy confidence let nothing shake;

All now mysterious shall be bright at last.

Be still, my soul: the waves and winds still know

His voice Who ruled them while He dwelt below.