In our hectic culture, it's easy to get caught up in the pressure to perform and achieve. It's easy to allow our to-do lists to dominate our time and our minds. But if we're not careful, all that frantic running around can rob us of what we need most.
by guest blogger, Athena Dean Holtz
What is it with these two words? And why is it so hard to accomplish?
Maybe because I’m a do-er. Doing things well always make me feel good…like all is right with the world.
But what about with me and God? Is everything right there?
I’m a speaker, author, publisher, blogger, radio host, women’s ministry leader, executive board member of our writer’s group, AND a pastor’s wife.
That’s a lot of DO-ing. And all that DO-ing crowds out that still, small voice that beckons me to …
I think most of my life I’ve avoided slowing down because that seems to be when the pain bubbles to the surface and the emotions swirl. It’s an uncomfortable feeling that I’ve spent years pushing back down and numbing with various drugs of my own choosing: working, shopping, eating, social media … and the list goes on.
During my time in Texas, I was helping my brother care for my mom in the last months of her life. There was so much pain I was still running from, and all I could think to do was whine to Him to hurry up and bring my Prince Charming.
But I wasn’t ready. I needed to learn to be still and allow Him to heal my heart.
And so He began using benches to get my attention, to draw me into BE-ing instead of DO-ing.
They were everywhere. On every porch, in every yard. It was hard to miss the emphasis, especially now as I walk my neighborhood in Washington, with only one bench in blocks!!
Come, sit with Me. Slow down. Think about all I have brought you through. Ponder my faithfulness. Pray.
Focus on what you have, not what you don’t have.
So that is what I did. And healing came. So did my Prince Charming! I can’t promise the same thing will happen for you, but I can tell You He will answer Your prayers as you surrender to Him.
Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart be courageous. Wait for the Lord. Psalms 27:14 CSB
He heals the brokenhearted and bandages their wounds. Psalms 147:3 CSB
[Lord, I am choosing today not to] worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, [I] present [my] requests to [You]. And [I thank You that Your] peace, which surpasses all understanding, [guards my heart and mind] in Christ Jesus. Phil 4:6-7
Lord, I thank You that You do, indeed, heal the brokenhearted. That would be me and I would guess some others who are reading this post right now. You bandage all our wounds, after you’ve cleaned them and applied your healing balm. I thank You, that as You heal our hearts, You remind us that You value those who fear You, those who put our hope in Your faithful love (Psalm 147:11 CSB).
Thank you, Lord, that You value us. As broken and hurting and wounded as we are, You value us as we revere you and recognize Your faithfulness. We are valuable to You. Through the brokenness in our lives, the cracks in our pots, Your light shines. Your hope spills over onto other broken women and brings light in the darkness of pain and despair.
Help us to BE STILL in the midst of this Truth, and allow You to bring life.
Athena Dean Holtz is a speaker, publisher, radio host, and pastor’s wife. Her memoir, Full Circle: Coming Home to the Faithfulness of God (Redemption Press 2017) chronicles her entrapment and deliverance from two cults, Scientology before becoming a Christian, and a legalistic, destructive, toxic Christian cult called Sound Doctrine after her salvation. Visit her online at: www.athenadeanholtz.com.
One woman’s search for acceptance and love takes her on a 12-year journey into deception in a restrictive and legalistic cult. A true-life Cinderella love story of losing everything and regaining freedom, redemption, and faith.