Devotion for Thursday, July 16 
 
CALM AND STILLNESS
 
Be still and know that I am God.
   Psalm 46:10
 
There are so many ways that life can set us off-money problems, children, work, car problems, racism, egocentrism, pandemics, and the list is endless. Anxiety becomes a reality and its solution often times a mystery. However, one thing we do know is that we can choose how we react to a situation, and it's been proven that calmness and stillness are one of the answers. But how do we cultivate calmness and stillness?
 
Keeping in mind Philippians 4:13 might be the best place to begin-"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." We know His strength is enduring and His arms everlasting. What reassurance!
 
When Jesus was on trial before Pilate, He was accused of many crimes and Pilate asked Him if he was going to answer the charges. Jesus said nothing which surprised Pilate. He presented Himself as calm and chose how to react. Perhaps he didn't want to get pulled into the drama and say things He knew wouldn't matter. Quite an example to follow.
 
Stillness woven into our lives allows us to experience God. It helps us to make a clear, empty space that the Holy Spirit can inhabit. Stillness can be cultivated through music, through prayer, during worship or simply by sitting and watching the rain. Do you have a place of quietude?
 
Susanna Wesley had 17 children, one of whom was John Wesley . She created a quiet place by putting her rocking chair in the middle of the living room, sitting down and throwing a blanket over her to cover her. Thomas Edison had a thinking chair. Beethoven found walking with a paper and pencil in case genius should hit as his place to encounter God. Where is your place of quietude? Create one and you too will encounter God.
 
 
Gracious God, help us to cultivate a sense of calmness and stillness as only you can. In Your name we pray. Amen.
 
                                                              Barbara Schneider 
 
 
820 Almshouse Road  Ivyland, PA 18974
215 357-6998   stjumc@aol.com