I recently moved to the city, from a small town of 2000 people. It’s been a bit of an adjustment, but I think the biggest contrast was the noise. I live in an apartment building, so there’s usually noise of some sort most of the time. There are kids outside playing, parents yelling at their kids, sirens, and airplanes flying overhead. I went home last weekend, and all I heard were cows in the field out back. It was almost deafeningly quiet. Yet even amidst the quiet there can still be a great deal of noise. It’s the noise in my head. Even if my surroundings are quiet, it can still be noisy if I’m not at rest in my heart. If I have allowed the day’s cares and worries to intrude upon the stillness of my heart then I am not living biblically. What does the Bible have to say about being at rest?
1 Peter 3:4 says, “but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious.”
The Greek word for quiet come from two root words that mean to ‘hold in the hand’, and ‘settled, steadfast.’ It implies a sense of remaining steadfast by keeping hold over one’s agitated or anxious thoughts.
I do not occupy myself with things
too great and too marvelous for me.
But I have calmed and quieted my soul,
like a weaned child with its mother;
like a weaned child is my soul within me.
Ps 131: 1b-2
It is interesting that a lot of the passages relating to stillness place the responsibility on the believer. It is our choice whether we have a restful heart, or a busy and distracted one. One of the staff at my Bible College said something once that I’ve never forgotten. He said that when we see a command in Scripture we should see it as a promise. Because if God has placed it there, then He will give us to grace to obey it. It is entirely possible to live with a quiet and peaceful heart, even if our circumstances say otherwise, because our peace does not come from this world. It comes from Jesus, who is the Prince of Peace. When you find your thoughts drifting and becoming unproductive, stop, and redirect them with Scripture. Ask the Lord to fill you with His peace again.
On a practical note, I have found that it is extremely helpful to limit distracting social media sites, and to be watchful over the amount of time I am spending on them. I find that this helps my mind to feel less cluttered and scattered throughout the day. I installed something called Block Site which will block the site that I don’t want to access at certain times of the day.
So friends, spend time with the Lord each day. Saturate in the Word of God, and don’t allow the busyness and noise of life to steal your peace and joy. Take time away from your devices. Be present with your family and friends. Take a walk in nature. Read a good book. Be at rest in your soul, because He promised to leave us with peace (John 14:27).