Posted by: pmarkrobb | April 8, 2023

four simple and settled words

It feels like there are a thousand things I could say about a day for which nothing is said in scripture. So many curiosities. So many questions. What I truly believe is the created world caught its breath on that specific Sabbath. It was a patterned day of rest, but this one’s stillness and reason were thoroughly unprecedented and deeply needed.

In previous years, I’ve taken special notice of today’s suitable silence and the purpose in the pause. My heart this year has come to rest on four simple and settled words. They’re quite familiar and embedded within the final stanza of a standout Psalm. Here’s how that Psalm starts:

God is our refuge and strength, a tested help in times of trouble.
And so we need not fear even if the world blows
up and the mountains crumble into the sea.
Let the oceans roar and foam; let the mountains tremble!
Psalm 46:1-3 (TLB)

Indeed, Friday was a time of trouble. In the hearts and minds of many of those who loved Jesus most in this life, the world had just blown up (I say many, because I’d like not to judge that the hearts and hopes of all had completely crumbled). And, for certain, the mountains trembled. Their test is also ours today. Their Saturday isn’t unlike the diagnosis that blows up our world, the offense of a beloved that knocks us to our knees, the dead silence in response to our pleading prayer for help. We wrestle with our Refuge and Strength. We question how tested He is in our own testing. We falter or fail to trust. We forget or lose faith in His promise.

The four words I heard, nestled in the middle of the final stanza of that same Psalm, is our invitation as much as it was theirs … Be still and know (v.10 – ESV).

I deliberately chose The Living Bible translation for verses one through three above because of its language for those four powerful words in verse ten:

Stand silent! Know …

It was the high call to all of creation that sacred Sabbath – the rocks and His beloved alike. Stand silent. “Trust me,” their Creator whispered. I Am about to rise again the third day, just as I said I would. I Am your redeemer. I Am your refuge and strength. I Am a tested help. Be still and know that I Am. Can you see yourself a little more clearly in that Saturday? Can you hear me (Him) writing to you specifically today? Be still and know, dear brother or sister. He was their redeemer and refuge, and He is yours.


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