How To “Be Still And Know God” In A Busy World

Anyone with small children knows how hard it is to “Be still and know God”. I no longer have children at home but it seems that other things creep in to take the place of toddlers pulling at our legs. Regardless of your schedule or responsibilities, you may find it hard to “Be still and know God” in your busy world.

Photo of a woman sitting next to a calm sea, with text overlay that reads, "How to be still and know God in a busy world."

What does it mean to “Be still and know God”?

This verse comes from Psalm 46:10. When I think of “being still”, my mind conjures up someone sitting in total silence. While this practice is important, that is not the totality of what this verse is talking about.

While the King James Version used the word “still”, later translations used other words.

It is always a good practice to look at what comes before any verse that we are trying to understand. Psalm 46 starts with “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” Many of the following verses talk about wars and unrest.

When the author of Psalm 46 gets to verse 10 he is telling us that all of this trouble going on around us should not affect our relationship with God. The New American Standard Version says, “Cease striving”. Other versions say, “let go”, or “relax”. So the full meaning of “Be still and know God” is that we need to not be shaken, not be troubled when life is hard. We can have confidence when we know God. The rest of verse 10 and into verse 11 say:

“I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth. The Lord of hosts is with us; The God of Jacob is our stronghold.”

We can have hope when life is hard. The God we know and love rules over all. While things get rough at times, we can count on God to be there for us. We can relax and trust Him. The key is that we must get to know Him and that takes time just like building any other relationship.

Bible verses about being too busy for God

  • “For Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Matthew 5:21
  • “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.” I Peter 5:8
  • “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and all these things shall be added unto you.” Matthew 6:33
  • “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28
  • “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, but one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:41-42
  • “The world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.” 1 John 2:27
  • “To everything, there is a season . . . ” Ecclesiastes 3:1-22

How much time should you spend with God?

Photo of an hour glass representing time spent with God.

On the farm, spring and summer are very busy. The fields need water. The grass is growing and has to be cut and made into hay bales for animal feed. Goats are having babies and some need bottle feeding. Hens are hatching out babies which means more food and water dishes to keep filled. Late fall and winter have fewer demands.

As sure as the seasons’ change, so do the demands of each person’s life. Babies are born with all their needs. People get married and then must plan for the needs of the other person. Elderly parents need help. Jobs change or promotions come which place greater responsibilities on a person’s shoulders. Class schedules are light one semester and heavy the next.

When our season of life is demanding, that is, when we have no control over it, our available time to sit and be still will change. Never-the-less, We must not neglect time with God. Without it, we can not grow in our faith.

How to make time for God in a busy schedule

Take a look at your priorities

Photo of a woman on her cell phone looking at social medial and caption- "Is social media a priority over God?"
Is social media a priority over God?

I hate to admit it but I always have time for what I really want to do. In today’s busy world of legitimate responsibilities, we have chosen to add Netflix, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, and a myriad of other things that are not necessities. I have had to make a conscious decision to cut back on these activities because they become addictive. Once I get started with electronic devices it is hard to find a stopping point. My guess is you may have the same problem.

Ask for help

“A mans gotta do what a mans gotta do” is a movie quote that demonstrates our human nature to not ask for help. Another quote that goes back to at least the 1800s is, “pull yourself up by your own bootstraps”. Per Wiktionary, it means:

“To begin an enterprise or recover from a setback without any outside help; to succeed only by one’s own efforts or abilities.”

The problem with this type of independence is that we were never designed to do life by ourselves. First of all, God created us to be incomplete without Him. He also designed us to need other humans. When we deviate from His plan, it is often due to a prideful spirit. We want to be “supermom”, “super grandma”, or “wonder woman.” We don’t want to look weak. The Bible has something to say about a “lone ranger mentality”.

“Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor. If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves.” Ecclesiastes 4:9-10

Don’t neglect getting together with others who love Jesus

While sometimes our responsibilities prevent us from spending large blocks of time with others, we can’t neglect it entirely. These moments, even if limited, provide us with encouragement to keep our focus on God. Hebrews 10:25

Utilize technology wisely

  • Many phones have Bible apps and devotionals. Use them when you have a minute here or there instead of looking at social media.
  • Listen to godly music when driving, doing dishes, cooking, etc.
  • Listen to godly podcasts when doing the above activities

Look for God in the world around you

Photo of a monarch butterfly on flowers, representing looking for God in the world around us. It is part of being still and knowing God in a busy world.
Monarch butterfly

Our world has many reminders of the majesty of our God. As we become more aware of them, it will help keep our minds fixed on Him. I love this quote from Dr. David Jeremiah on April 22, 2020:

In nature, “We see the workmanship of a great Engineer, the artistry of a great Designer, and the glory of a great Creator.”

I learn much about God as He teaches me through our chickens, baby goats, farm equipment, grandchildren, circumstances, and so much more. This practice, though, does not come automatically. We must ask God to teach us in our everyday moments. I pray that you will begin to do that.

How to “Be still and Know God” – A gift for you

In order to “Be still and Know God,” it is helpful to have reminders around us. In the book of Joshua, it says that “This book of the law shall not depart out of our mouths, but we are to meditate on it day and night.” That is why I want to give you the scripture card shown here.

Simply click on the image to download it. No email required.

When printed on card stock in smaller sizes, it can easily be laminated and hung with ribbon.

If you are looking for further Scripture cards, or for coloring pages, join the community at the Creator’s Classroom.

photo of many of the scripture cards and coloring pages available. These are resources to help the reader find more hope, joy and peace.

Also see the resource page for journal pages, books, and music on finding hope, joy, and peace.

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