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My sister-in-law’s funeral was held on October 28, 2021. Connie planned her own funeral, and she had been clear that she wanted her favorite verse to be included. Psalm 46:10 – Be still and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations. I will be exalted in the Earth.

Be still and know that I am God. I also love this verse. It is a verse that I have turned to often during times of difficulty and times of anxiety. Be still. And know that I am God. I feel so much power and wisdom in those 8 words.

Be still. I sometimes repeat those 2 words over and over until I can feel my heart rate, breathing and even my thinking slow down. Be still. Be still in this moment. This moment is all I need to focus on. This moment is all I have, and it is all I need. Be still and savor this holy moment.

And know that I am God. Not think. Not wonder. Know that I am God. When Connie was asked how she faced this last year of battling cancer, she would respond - be still and know that I am God. She had peace in that knowledge. She found comfort and strength in that knowledge. Know that I am God.

She knew she was only passing through this life. She knew she had another life waiting. Yes, she was sad to leave her loved ones left here on Earth, and we will miss her. But she is now with God. The One that she knows is God. And in that belief, she was still. And confident. And at peace – in each moment that she had.

I recently read a devotion based on Exodus 4. In this chapter, Moses is telling God why he cannot do what God has called him to do. I’ve lost count of how many devotions I’ve read that are based on this same scripture. I’m guessing that means that there are many people who can identify with Moses arguing with God about his calling. I guess that also means I have plenty of company when I argue with God about what He is asking me to do. I have told God - you have me confused with someone else. There must be someone standing behind me that you are talking to because you cannot possibly be asking me to do that.

It seems that each time I re-read this chapter, the verse that screams out to me is verse 2 - God asks Moses - what is in your hand. God is asking - what have I put in your hand that you are to use in your calling.

God’s calling or purpose for me is not about what I think I’m capable of. It’s about what I can do with God by my side. It’s about the gifts and strengths God gave me that I may not even recognize. It’s not about my plan, my to do list, my desires. And it’s definitely not about what is easy. It’s all about God’s purpose for my life. My true purpose. And, no, I cannot do this on my own. But God has put something in my hand, just like he put a staff in Moses’ hand.

The writer of a devotion that I read several years ago said that our lives often parallel Holy Week. We have a Palm Sunday – celebration. We move on to Thursday – betrayal. Thursday is followed by death on Friday. Saturday is a day where God seems silent. Then comes Sunday – a day of new life.

I think there is truth to this analogy. I was particularly drawn to God’s apparent silence on Saturday. I was drawn to Saturday because I have noticed God’s apparent silence during times of suffering.

I know many people who are suffering. For some, it is the death of a loved one. For others, it is the death (or perhaps postponement) of dreams and plans. Others are facing health issues. I believe when God is silent it is because He is holding us so tightly. He is silent because we are not ready for anything else but His silent embrace. While we may not recognize it, He is with us. Hold tight to that belief and hold tight to God. God is with us even when we do not believe it. For me, these are the times when He has held me the closest. Silently, patiently, waiting for me to be able to hear His words – you are my child, and you are loved. And remember, Sunday will follow Saturday. We may think Sunday will never come, but it does.

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