When we make time to rest, to pray and to meditate we can often find it difficult to simply stop. We notice an inner inertia — our thoughts, desires and activity seem to have an on going momentum. So, it is helpful to bring ourselves to pause in order for us to be able to engage in prayer and be attentive to the Spirit. The Psalms phrase it this way: “be still, and know that I am God.”
This is a simple exercise to slow ourselves down and to orientate our attention to God, using the words from Psalm 46:10
Find a quiet place to sit. Take a comfortable posture which feels relaxed whilst also enabling you to be attentive to God.
Notice how you are breathing. Are your breaths short or long? Allow yourself to take a deep breath, filling your lungs fully. Exhale slowly and you allow your shoulders and back to relax.
Now dwell on the words from Psalm 46: “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations…”. As you recall these words in your mind, let them take a similar pace to your breathing. Repeat this, and each time shorten the sentence, until it becomes just one word.
“Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations…”
“Be still, and know that I am God…”
“Be still, and know…”