Saturday, August 20, 2011

Peace, be Still!

I have just spent three days of study break at the beautiful new Elim International Centre at Malvern in the UK.  Here my old college has been established after its move from Nantwich in Cheshire and the new facilities are terrific.  It was so inspiring to be able to spend significant time in reading, prayer and reflection.  Walking up the Malvern Hills, in the armpit of which sits the new Centre, was a special joy.  Don't you just feel that there is something unique about high places?  I do, and as I gazed out over hundreds of square miles of glorious English countryside, I felt inspired enough to start writing poetry!  Now that's a first for me!

Being quiet and still are vital ingredients in catching the whisper of God.  I have found it challenging to hear from the Lord during my long battle with pain as agony shouts louder than any competitor.  It has sometimes been a real act of discipline to sit and be still in the presence of God when my body has been wracked with pain and my mind clouded by opiates.  Now in the aftermath of such wonderful improvement as I have known this year I felt like I had met with an old friend after a long period of being in touch only from a distance.

The most moving part of my dialogue with heaven this week was the flow of repeated assurances in both Bible readings and the whispers in my heart that God's love for me has not diminished.  He also seemed to be saying that this is a new season - 'after the storm' - and that the day of fulfillment of so many promises is upon us. If that is so, then thank God for that!  All I know is that God seems to come close to us when we can make the space and the time to be still, focused and alone.  Try it some time!