On a Twitter or a blog or something a few weeks ago I saw this verse:
“The LORD will fight for you while you keep silent.” Exodus 14:14 (NIV)
It was a critical time for me because I was in a situation where I had this impending appointment where I really needed to listen and let others do the talking. I prayed over this meeting for nearly a week, asking God to help me not to “script”, that is think out all the possibilities that could happen or be said. “Well, when he says ‘x’ I’ll say ‘this'” And so on.
And in the midst of that, I saw this verse. I latched on to it and it became my prayer.
That week-long vigil and the faith and patience that accompanied it were certainly from God, and God showed up in that meeting, at least from my vantage point, in that I didn’t argue, I didn’t defend, and I actually achieved listening. I corrected fallacies, or at least tried to, but I did so in a calm manner, and that, let me tell you, is nothing short of a miracle, because I can lose it in a heartbeat when I feel I am being wronged or criticized.
Afterward, I still felt the need to “set the record straight,” and I wanted so desperately to continue to respond. I began contemplating in my head ways I could do that. I could write a letter. I could say this, say that, etc. Scripting.
And then the verse came to me again, this time via a posting on Facebook and slightly different in New American Standard, which replaces “silent” with “still.”
“The LORD will fight for you; you need only to be still.” Exodus 14:14 (NAS)
Still. That’s silent plus, I think. Not only be quiet with my voice but be quiet in my head and my spirit. I was not saying anything — I was being silent — but I was not still. I was still stressing, worrying, trying to figure it out.
Later that day, during a brief, calm moment all to myself (which every mother knows only happens in the bathroom), I’m floating in bath water with my ears just under the edge of the water where I can’t really “hear” anything but white noise, He spoke to my heart
“Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10a
See the progression? First, be silent. Then, be still. Now, know. Know what? That I am God. What does that mean? That I’ve got you covered.
It all comes down to trust, a topic I plan to revisit here soon once I get all my thoughts together on it. He doesn’t need me to speak or move or fret. It’s in His hands and all I have to do is believe it and then live it. And with His help, I’m starting to get that and actually do it. It’s not easy to be silent. Those of you know know me know that. It’s not easy to be silent in the face of misinformation and judgment. But He didn’t call us to easy things, or even hard things, but His things. And right now, His thing for me is to be silent, be still, and trust … because He is God.