My Granddaddy was a character. And one of my earliest memories was him “playing” his favorite game with us. It was a game that he had created just for his six beloved grandchildren—a game called “Mousie.” The winner of this game was the grandchild who could be still and quiet (like a mouse) the longest. Thinking back, I don’t recall ever winning…
Time has taught me to be quiet, but I struggle to be still. I live alone, and so you would think I’d have plenty of quiet stillness. But no. As a lover of music, it’s rare that I don’t have music playing in my home. And most evenings, even if I’m working on projects for clients, I’ve got classic sitcoms chattering in the background to keep me company. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that, in theory. But how often do I get through a busy, hectic, exhausting week, and a full weekend, to find myself collapsing into bed on Sunday night, looking at the work week ahead through tired eyes, and wishing I’d really rested—and knowing that I could have found that rest simply by getting still and quiet.
For a couple of months now, I’ve been working on establishing some new bedtime routines. A cup of warm, sleepy tea. The dim glow of my bedside lamp as I dab on some calming essential oils. And a couple of weeks ago, I added something to that routine which I should have added a long time ago – picking up an old paperback Bible a friend gave me in college, and reading a little. There was a time in my life that I made this a priority, but those days got lost about the same time as my snazzy teen devotional Bible did. And somehow, the practice has been hard for me to find again. But this week, I got some encouragement from Corrie ten Boom…
In our reading this week, the dreaded event has occurred—the Nazi authorities have come, stormed into the ten Boom home and arrested more than 30 people. Corrie—burning with fever—is captured, along with her very elderly father. And their first night incarcerated, Corrie learned that even when you find yourself in a scary, dangerous place—a fearsome place where the whole world seems to be coming apart and you can’t see what’s ahead—you can find still and quiet. Her father reached into the depths of his memory and his heart to speak to them the scriptures that they had leaned on for their entire lives.
“Every day of my life had ended like this: that deep, steady voice, that sure and eager confiding of us all to the care of God. The Bible lay at home on its shelf, but much of it was stored in his heart. His blue eyes seemed to be seeing beyond the locked and crowded room, beyond Haarlem, beyond earth itself, as he quoted from memory: ‘Thou art my hiding place and my shield: I hope in thy word….Hold thou me up, and I shall be safe….’” (ebook location 2578)
My world often seems complicated—though not nearly as troubled and terrifying as that of the ten Booms. May I learn to find a place of still and quiet at the end of each day to spend in that hiding place that God provides for me. That I can be restored with those healing, nourishing, loving words that He is constantly speaking over me.
This post is part of a weekly discussion on Corrie ten Boom’s classic, “The Hiding Place.” You do not have to read the book to weigh in on whatever topic is being discussed. However, if you have written a response to this week’s chapter, feel free to go visit Jason, my co-facilitator, at Connecting to Impact, where you will find the widget to link it up.