Advent Promises

Wednesday, December 9

Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, 
I will be exalted in the earth.  Psalm 46:10

Everything—and many of the “everyones”—around us war against God’s be still. Several Hebrew transliterations render those two words let it be. But how can we let it be? If we don’t do something, who will?

God’s fleeing people were being led out of bondage by the hand of Yahweh. They had visual evidence of God’s presence—pillars of cloud by day and pillars of fire by night. But then: …the Israelites looked up and there were the Egyptians, marching after them. They were terrified… (Exodus 14)

Our “Egyptians” are named Covid, political unrest, economic downturn, loneliness, old age, and—to be honest—we’re sometimes terrified just like the Israelites.  Perhaps we look back on the invisible “good old days”as did the fleeing children of God: What have you done to us, taking us out of Egypt? Back in Egypt didn’t we tell you this would happen? Didn’t we tell you, ‘Leave us alone here in Egypt…’ Years later, David cries out with words familiar to our own: How long, Lord? Will you forget me forever? (Psalm 13:1)

Psalm 46 introduces a cluster of psalms that all express confidence in the security of God’s people in the midst of a threatening world. Eugene Peterson catches my attention with his summary of verses 10 and 11: Step out of the traffic! Take a long, loving look at me, your High God, above politics, above everything. (Our) Jacob-wrestling God fights for us, God-of-Angel-Armies protects us.

Stop. Light a candle. BE STILL.

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