A week ago I was immersed in a community of Christian women writers and bloggers at Allume in Greenville, SC. Every part of me was filled with new friendships, wise words, God’s truth and whispers directly from God opening my heart to new possibilities. Every minute of the three days was a leaning into God and a filling of my heart and soul with welcoming invitations to join God and new friends around the table.
On my drive home from Greenville, I found myself craving silence – a stillness you can only find in God. I ached for the surrendering of my heart poured out in one, long sigh of contentment. And as I craved this deep silence and the chance to sort through the snapshots of the weekend, I knew that time was needed – a one on one with God to be still and let go. However, my overly tired brain and body could only focus on one thing as I drove home – the road and getting home safely. My deep desire for stillness with God has been a lingering ache all week as I jumped back into reality and one of my busiest weeks ever. I prayed for the time to reconnect and gain clarity for the jumble of words, faces and thoughts that ebbed and flowed each day.
God heard my heart desires and literally provided me with snapshot moments to assure me He was walking this walk with me. From the stunning beauty of God’s landscape on the drive home, to the still life pictures of my ordinary life throughout the week, each reminder was God’s gift to me of the stillness that is only found in Him.
[Tweet “Stillness is found in the moment when you open your heart wide and invite God in.”]
This past week God’s sweet invitations to stillness looked like this:
~ The snapshot of the beginning dance of dusk as the day swirls its brightness with twilight
~ A text message from a friend asking me to join her for coffee after work. My heart sang happily “Oh yes please!”. In the moment of conversation and coffee, I found stillness.
~ God’s beauty displayed in the mountains of North Carolina. Awestruck by the glow of the sun over the mountains to my right and the fog rising from the valley to greet the morning sky, I wished to capture each array in a series of snapshots. God’s beauty before me was a call to worship in thanks for the stillness provided in the middle of my drive home.
He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” Psalm 46:10
How will you capture God’s stillness this week? What do your moments of stillness look like when busy takes over and you crave silence?
I want to take this time to introduce you to a new ministry that began on November 1. Heather Mertens has had a vision for the last 13 years that God has been gradually shaping into what has become GoingALLIN.org. Our faith in God can be lukewarm or it can be an ALLIN venture in which we trust God with every part of our lives. As a team member, I am inviting you to join us and Go ALLIN for God. You can check out the website here: GoingALLIN.org and the Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/IamGoingALLIN
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To quote Mandy Hale; it is in the silence that God speaks the loudest. 🙂
Amen! Now we need to give ourselves the gift of silence to soak in the whispers that will be sure to follow. Blessings!
I have always wanted to go to Allume. We will have to get together (in person!) so I can hear all about it. I so agree with you about silence being “a stillness you can only find in God.” I forget that far too often and find myself craving silence and not turning to Him. Thanks for your beautiful reminder, Mary!
Mary, I love this! I wrote last month on Rest for 31 Days and then, on Nov 1st, my Honey and I went away with two other couples for an annual ‘retreat’ of sorts… a trip we take nearly every year that is full of refreshing and just giving thanks for each other and for God and all He is doing and this year there was maybe a little less talking – but we could FEEL His Rest washing over us… we were all present, in the moment, together and it was such a gift!
I love how you described that you were all present in the moment and it was such a gift. Amen! We fill our loves with busy and we keep moving on without really being present most of the time. God has so much for us to see and hear and looking for those snapshots each day will center us on why we are really here and working so hard. Love that you wrote on rest for 31 days and love that you had a weekend full of friends and God’s renewal. Hugs!
I have to say I envy you, Mary. I’ve always wanted to go to a blogging conference but haven’t been able to make it happen for various reasons. I bet it was so encouraging! And that need for stillness–oh YES–I look for that every day and when I meet with God I long for more. It will be great when we get to heaven and we’ll have all the time in the “heavens” to sit at Jesus’ feet. Love the photos too!
Amen to being still in the real presence of Jesus! The conference was amazing and I will be processing all the words for a long time. Being an introvert, I especially craved the silence when I returned home. I pray we all seek stillness in our day and spend this time deepening our relationships with God. Love and hugs!
I crave stillness in the Lord, but often times (too often!) find myself with too much business. It is a work in progress for me; I am learning more and more how blessed my days are when I set aside time (for me early mornings!) to talk and worship with Him! Thanks for this beautiful reminder! Blessings!
I absolutely love the early morning hour when the house is quiet, my mind is clear and I am open to listening and learning. Everyone should gift themselves with this time to start their day to center and be ready for the day! So glad you stopped by. Blessings!
I’ve had so much stillness over this last month, yet my heart aches for more of Him. I don’t think I am using the “I have nothing to do” scenario to my fullest advantage. He is faithful, He keeps drawing me away.
The thing is there shouldn’t be a “I have nothing to do” scenario because God is always calling us to more. In the ache of wanting more of God we learn who we are and how much He loves us. It is a beautiful place to be. Praying for you always!
I love how He meets our needs for silence and stillness so individually. For me, my two days was a different kind of stillness that I really needed. My phone would die about an hour in (I need a new battery) which forced me to be fully present. To not worry about taking pictures or anything but to take in the inspiring messages. It filled and refreshed me in such a way that was needed. God is so good. Love your images, Mary. Much love to you. xoxo
I am so glad you were fully “present” at your storyline conference. Based on the quotes that you have been posting it was amazing. I need to work on being present at all moments in my day. So blessed you stopped by and love you much!
Good morning, friend … this really resonates with me. I finally stopped going to those huge counseling conferences because they were so jam-packed with the best and the brightest speakers, music, opportunites, classes, interactions. You just didn’t want to miss a thing.
Surrounded by thousands of people for days left me in a coma, and it took many days after each event for me to come back to a stillness in my spirit and clarity in my head.
Now I know that part of this is being an introvert and needing time and space and quiet and solitude to regroup, to refill, recalibrate. And I don’t kick myself for being who I am.
And someday, yes, someday, I might head off to a conference once again …
I am an introvert as well which is why I really wanted to curl up in a ball under a blanket when I got home but life goes on. I found that I did great for the weekend at Allume and was able to still find some quiet in the middle of the event. I chose to step out of some the speakers or planned activities and wandered among the vendors or spent time in the prayer room. Meeting so many online friends in person was a blessing that I will remember forever. I do hope that even though you are an introvert that we will meet someday! 🙂 You are a gift my friend!
I, too have feel Him calling me to be still and quiet since Allume. At first I thought that meant shutting everyone out and turning off any noise but I am realizing that it really is just seeking Him. I am learning to find Him in all areas of my day. Thanks for sharing
Love seeing you here Amy! Also loved meeting you in real life at Allume. I am finding since we pack our days with so much busy we need to be very intentional about allowing God to be part of the busy and then make time for the quiet. It’s amazing where we find God when we really start looking. Weekend blessings!
Mary, it is so true – our souls crave silence & stillness. The most wonderful moments to me are my early mornings. While it is yet dark & still, the sound of my coffee going & His Word open before me, these are the moments I love with Him. Blessings today!
I believe we are probably up at the same time in the early morning enjoying our coffee and God. There is nothing like sitting in the quiet and centering myself on God to prepare for the day. So glad you stopped by Joanne! Hope the rest of your week is blessed!
“Stillness is found in the moment when you open your heart wide and invite God in.” Love this! And your photos are wonderful! We can find peace wherever God is present…in the silence or the soft conversation with a friend, the incessant chatter of the littles, or the hugs and squeals of friends meeting at a conference. All we have to do is invite Him in. Thanks for linking up to Testimony Tuesday!
Oh yes!!! I am realizing if I do not have even one of these “call to stillness” moments each day I am missing out on the invitation that God has prepared for me. Of course squeals and hugs at the conference were a highlight!!! Thank you for your link up and for being you!
Thank goodness for those quite times to connect. Even through just the beautiful sites of this Earth and on the faces of the people we see.
Amen! I know you are gaining some firsthand experience right now with your travels. May you find God in the landscapes of this Earth and be called to stillness as you gaze at it’s beauty. Miss you!!!
Love the idea that even when we can’t get that deep stillness with God, He can still give us snapshot moments. Enough to tide us over until we can take the time to just be still and quiet with Him.
Amen! I know I will always crave stillness with God but I need to look for the moments that sneak in throughout the day also. The gorgeous sunsets, conversations with friends and 3rd graders making me smile are some of the moments that I treasure. So blessed you stopped by and for your encouragement.