“Be Still, My Soul…

…Thy God doth undertake to guide the future as he has the past.”

Be Still, My Soul has been my favorite hymn since my freshman year of college. In the past several years it has meant different things to me at different times. During a time when a close friend and I were drifting apart, I was reassured by the words that “Thy Jesus can repay/ from His own fullness all He takes away.” Later, when college felt overwhelming and singleness was especially lonely, I drew comfort from the promise that my best and heavenly Friend, “through thorny ways/ leads to a joyful end.”

Now, as a newlywed of 8 months, with a comfortable job and a loving husband, what could possibly be hindering my soul from being still? I have all of the things I have been wanting for years. Yet I often find myself looking for the next thing. I long for the next step instead of being content with this one. I am a planner by nature, and I feel restless unless I feel that I am moving forward. Until lately, marriage and employment were things for which I was striving. Now that I have been blessed with both of these gifts, I struggle with feeling like my life is moving. The daily tasks of going to work and crunching numbers all day and coming home to eat and sleep weary me with their mundanity. I feel stagnant, and the only way that I know how to cope with that feeling is to look to the next stage of life and begin striving (or nagging, as my husband would say) toward that. I chafe against stillness.

Into that restlessness this hymn yet again speaks stillness to my soul, this time with assurance that God is guiding my future as He has my past. Only in looking back can I truly see how God has guided my past, through every step, to get me to where I am now. When I felt that things were going nowhere, He was working in ways that I could not see or perceive. He is still the same. And I have but to be still and trust that He will faithfully continue to guide my future in the same manner. This is a blog to see where He is leading, and to document what I am learning along the way. Stillness does not mean stagnation. It just means that He is working in ways that are mysterious to me.

“Thy hope, thy confidence let nothing shake/ All now mysterious shall be bright at last./ Be still, my soul/ The waves and wind still know/ His voice who ruled them while He dwelt below.”


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