Sample Chapter “Brooklyn Raised/Livin’ Upstate”

Still

Being still. Just standing there being as still as you can when you realize that everything is in God’s hands, no matter what the situation is, can be an amazing WOW feeling. When you start to feel overwhelmed by something that is totally out of your control, the next thing you know you hear a song playing in the distance. The lyrics are telling you God is in control, just remain still. When you all of a sudden see this Bible verse that someone posted on facebook or wherever and that verse is telling you the Lord will fight for you, you just need to be still.

That’s when you, that’s when I, just have to stand there and say “God is in control no matter what, I know He is in control.” “What an amazing and awesome God that is!” It’s helpful for me to know that God is there. That He hears my prayers. That He knows what’s going on. I don’t have to tell Him, although I choose to because I need to talk to Him about what’s going on in my life and what’s hurting me emotionally.

Then I need to remain still and let Him do the work that needs to be done. It isn’t easy for me. Not by a long shot, but if I don’t stay still and let Him do what He needs to do, nothing will be at rest. Being still in the Lord allows me to also be still even when I need to make sure I do the every day things I have to do. Is it always easy for me to be still? No, but I find when I finally give in, my burden feels lighter. I believe it also brings me closer to God. It reminds me that no matter what, I have to trust in God. He knows what’s going on.

He just might be saying to me “I know child, be still and know that I know”.

A different kind of still is the kind when you talk about something still hurting. No matter how many years have past, there is still a kind of emotional pain that can be felt.

Sadness, hurt, crying, and frustration: all this accompanies life’s challenges.

It’s funny, in not such a funny way: One morning, a couple of years ago I heard two women from my Church talking about having babies and how some people say “after your 4th, they just take care of themselves” or “it gets easier” or something to that effect”! They were also talking about how many babies they want or when they decided to stop. Although it had been some time since I had a miscarriage, it was still fresh in my mind. I don’t know why, but it hit a nerve or something in me and I almost shared my opinion. It’s amazing how certain things can still sting the emotions after all these year from my last miscarriage. I guess it will just be one of those things that NEVER goes away. It just doesn’t sting like it used to.

There is another kind of still feeling that I have recently found. It’s that still feeling that you find yourself in when you realize that your loved one is sick, very sick and there isn’t anything that you can do for them.

I have felt this still feeling for the past couple of months… With the experience of knowing that my mom was sick and I couldn’t do anything about it. I prayed for her every day. I ask God to be with her every day. One day I was standing in my bedroom, folding clothes and all of a sudden, I just stood still. I remained standing still for a few minutes. I realized this was one of those moments, one of those trials, one of those “what are we going to do” moments. I realized that no matter what, I had to be still in the Lord and it’s His will that needed to be done. I might not like it or understand it, but I need to be still and trust in the Lord.

After the passing of my mom on New Year’s Day, January 1, 2014, there was this stillness, even though we all kept on moving. We did what we needed to do with getting her funeral arranged and all that. On the day of my mom’s funeral, the Pastor talked about how much she loved to praise the Lord. How much my mom loved to raise her arms up in praise to God. During the last song, the Pastor asked all those who wanted to, to join in a tribute to my mom by lifting up our arms in praise to the Lord while we sang the last verse two more times.

My husband and I automatically raised our arms in praise to God during that tribute to my mom. With the tears flowing down my face, I sang as best as I could with my arms lifted in praise to God. After about a minute, I closed my eyes and this stillness just came over me that I’ve never felt before. I was completely sad about losing my mom. At the same time, I knew how happy she would be to see us praising the Lord with our arms lifted as she would have done. I hope and pray I never forget that feeling. I hope to one day be able to feel that stillness again, but not at a funeral. I would prefer it to be at a happy gathering.

You can read more in “Brooklyn Raised/Upstate Livin'” available on Amazon.com