“Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for Him.” Psalms 37:7
When I read from the book of Psalms in the Bible, I feel like they slow me down. This is the reason why I have been reading them over the holiday season. Perhaps it’s because they are so short or maybe because they are such a mixture of pure emotion. Love, praise, agony, grief, worship, beauty, and adoration can all be found in the Psalms in one short burst. It’s all the things I experience often, especially at the holidays.
With the rush and go of the season, it is easy for me to make my morning devotion time another item on my checklist of to-dos. Even when I am reading my short little Psalm of the day, I catch my mind wandering to what I will bring to the holiday potluck or where I might find a gift for my neighbor. So in an effort to truly engage with my Bible time, I have been inspired lately to copy out my favorite portions in a journal.
There is something so peaceful about pressing a pen to paper and writing out Scripture that speaks to your heart. I find in the quiet space, the words become mine; God’s words are made personal to me. You could probably make a case that this would be a classical approach to learning God’s word—through copywork, meditation, and memorization. However, I wasn’t really trying to make my time classical or academic.
In the quiet of the mornings, the Psalms feel fresh to me when they are copied in my own hand. God surprises me with the gift of discovery each time I do it. Even Scripture that I have read over and over becomes new when I write it out for myself. I love that we serve a personal God who continues to surprise us daily.
As I slow down, I become more of the person I want to be. I’m a better homeschool mom, a better wife and friend. I hear better. Not just hearing literally, but emotionally. When I slow down enough to hear God’s loving whispers in the Psalms, I can pick up on my son’s emotions, I’m in tune with a friend’s worry and need for my encouragement. When I slow down, I can look people in the eye and see how I might pass along some kindness to them.
My encouragement for you this holiday season is to slow down. Listen for the whispers of our amazing Creator. Take one sentence from the Bible and let it bathe you in the wonder and majesty of His love. In that slowness of the moment, let the gift of Christmas surprise you again. He longs to spend those quiet moments with you every moment of every day. Give yourself the gift of slowing down enough to treasure it this season.