Sunday, April 15, 2012

The meaning of still

My words for this year are "Be still and know that I am God."
I've been thinking about those recently.  (Good thing since they are supposed to be my theme for the year.)  I've been thinking about what it means to be still.  To help me, I went looking for a definition of still.  Here's what I found.  And I found it here.

still 1  (stl)
adj. still·er, still·est
1. Free of sound.
2. Low in sound; hushed or subdued.
3. Not moving or in motion.
4. Free from disturbance, agitation, or commotion.
5. Free from a noticeable current: a still pond; still waters.
6. Not carbonated; lacking effervescence: a still wine.
7. Of or relating to a single or static photograph as opposed to a movie.
1. Silence; quiet: the still of the night.
2. A still photograph, especially one taken from a scene of a movie and used for promotional purposes.
3. A still-life picture.
1. Without movement; motionlessly: stand still.
a. At the present time; for the present: We are still waiting.
b. Up to or at a specified time; yet: still had not made up her mind.
c. At a future time; eventually: may still see the error of his ways.
3. In increasing amount or degree; even: and still further complaints.
4. In addition; besides: had still another helping.
5. All the same; nevertheless.
v. stilled, still·ing, stills
1. To make still or tranquil.
2. To make quiet; silence.
3. To make motionless.
4. To allay; calm: The parents stilled their child's fears of the dark.

There's a whole lot in here.  I think I'll just focus on still as an adjective since I think that's really how it is used in the verse.  

Still - free of sound.  I'm not so good at that.  I usually have the radio on (with CBC most of the time) or I have some music on.  I'm not sure whether that's good or bad.  Maybe a bit of both, depending on what's going on in my life.  I know that music can totally fill my soul and heal my heart.  But maybe it also distracts my mind from important things I should be thinking about (whatever those may be).

Still - low in sound, hushed or subdued.  That's generally how I am in the world, but I'm not sure that's what's important in the verse.

Still - not moving or not in motion.  Hmmm.  That can be a good thing, and it can be a bad thing.  I think it is good for me to know when to stop and when to say no, to make a decision that I can't do everything.  BUT, there is the danger, then, of not saying yes when saying yes would be a good thing.  I think the intent of the verse is not so much about being physically still and not moving, but more of an emotional or spiritual stillness and resting in God.  And that can be more challenging.

Still - free from disturbance, agitation, or commotion.  This is important.  But it's difficult.  There will be disturbances, agitations, and commotions in this life on earth.  Of that there is no question.  I suppose the goal is to remain still in God while I traverse through these times.  To know that God is there.  To know that God will always be there.  To trust God.  To feel hope.

Still - free from a noticeable current.  The examples are a still pond or still waters.  At first I didn't know how to apply this one.  But after I thought about it a little while, I came to this.     One way I could be free from a noticeable current is to make a conscious effort to disconnect from the computer periodically.  Not that I'm always connected, but more that I'm connected more than I think is good for me.  Sometimes.

As I glance over the other usages of still, I see other applications.  But I'll save those for another day.

1 comment:

  1. I like! (and can relate to much of what you wrote)