Stillness is not part of ordinary life in our society. We are always doing, going, rushing or talking. Cell phones are our constant connection with life outside of ourselves. We are not used to quiet or time for our own thinking, Yet, stillness is part of the awareness of the presence of the Sacred which we call prayer. It involves no commotion or agitation. Rather, to be still is to seek a serenity, a calm, a tranquility of being. We exchange our usual business, noise and activity for silence and quiet. We are free. We become aware. In experiencing stillness we can touch into our inner selves and open ourselves to the Holy Mystery within and around us.
I will bless you as long as I live; in your name I will lift up my hands.
Review the times for stillness in your day. Where can you make this happen realistically?
At the mountain of God, Horeb,
Elijah came to a cave where he took shelter.
Then the Lord said to him,
“Go outside and stand on the mountain before the Lord;
the Lord will be passing by.”
A strong and heavy wind was rending the mountains
and crushing rocks before the Lord—
but the Lord was not in the wind.
After the wind there was an earthquake—
but the Lord was not in the earthquake.
After the earthquake there was fire—
but the Lord was not in the fire.
After the fire there was a tiny whispering sound.
When he heard this,
Elijah hid his face in his cloak
and went and stood at the entrance of the cave.
1 Kings 19:9a
Be still and know that I am God.
Only in silence does man succeed in hearing…the voice of God, which really makes him free.
Pope John Paul II
In the business of this day
Grant me a stillness of seeing, O God.
In the conflicting voices of my heart
Grant me a calmness of hearing,
Let…my words and my actions
Be rooted in a silent certainty of your presence.
Let my passions for life…
Be grounded in the experience of your stillness.
Within you, there is a stillness and a sanctuary to which you can retreat at any time and be yourself.
Sometimes you need to sit lonely on the floor in a quiet room in order to hear your own voice and not let it drown in the noise of others.
In the midst of movement and chaos, keep stillness inside of you.
My heart is tuned to the quietness that the stillness of nature inspires.
Learning how to be still, to really be still and let life happen – that stillness becomes a radiance.