Still, Literally

My youngest (who travels mostly by cartwheel and is up at 5:30 AM constructing origami or sewing little doll dresses) announces at 7:00 AM that she is sick. Her stomach feels queasy, and she cannot possibly go to school. She wants to stay in bed and just. . . stay still.

For one who exists as non-stop movement (dancing, jumping, tumbling, and random hopping), her declaration means something. In fact, she tells me, “I don’t want to move.” (I know she’s really sick now).

So we stay put. We don’t move.

All morning, I reconsider the notion that when God says, “Be still and know that I am God”(Psalm 46:10) or that He will work on my behalf and I “need only to be still”(Exodus 14:14), this might actually mean to cease movement. 

I’m not sure I could. I’m not good at doing nothing and staying still. It drives me crazy.

But I’m thinking of it as a spiritual discipline the same way I might think about prayer, Bible reading, solitude, journaling, fasting, tithing, or worship. Stillness. Doing nothing but staying still is a kind of doing. 

I practice this beside my little girl who doesn’t want to move today.

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