Revelation Within On the Go!

Being Still: Waiting on the Lord

May 15, 2024 Heidi Bylsma-Epperson and Christina Motley Season 1 Episode 94
Being Still: Waiting on the Lord
Revelation Within On the Go!
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Revelation Within On the Go!
Being Still: Waiting on the Lord
May 15, 2024 Season 1 Episode 94
Heidi Bylsma-Epperson and Christina Motley

Have you ever caught yourself in a constant state of motion, unable to pause even for a breath? In this podcast, we share a candid conversation about the lost art of stillness, especially in our fast-paced digital age. We explore how our bodies' natural state of rest and digest, the parasympathetic state, has become elusive. Through personal stories, we highlight the prevalence of restlessness and advocate for reclaiming peace through patience and presence. We delve into ways of finding solace in stillness before God, managing stress, and integrating moments of stillness into daily life. Join us as we find a quiet place, take a break, breathe, and wait on the Lord. 

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Learn more about our Revelation Within Community: https://www.revelationwithin.org


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Have you ever caught yourself in a constant state of motion, unable to pause even for a breath? In this podcast, we share a candid conversation about the lost art of stillness, especially in our fast-paced digital age. We explore how our bodies' natural state of rest and digest, the parasympathetic state, has become elusive. Through personal stories, we highlight the prevalence of restlessness and advocate for reclaiming peace through patience and presence. We delve into ways of finding solace in stillness before God, managing stress, and integrating moments of stillness into daily life. Join us as we find a quiet place, take a break, breathe, and wait on the Lord. 

Support the Show.

Learn more about our Revelation Within Community: https://www.revelationwithin.org


Speaker 1:

Hi and welcome to our podcast Revelation Within On the Go. I'm Heidi Biles-Mapperson, one of your hosts and the owner and lead coach of the Revelation Within ministry.

Speaker 2:

And I'm Christina Motley, your other host, also a Revelation Within coach and Heidi's partner in all things Revelation Within. We are so happy to invite you to join us for this episode of Revelation Within on the go In our community during the month of April, revwithinteam we have been overcoming cravings.

Speaker 1:

Yes, yeah, it's been really awesome. There's this issue that at least it's very prevalent in my own life. I brought it to the forefront a little bit this week and we talked about it in our community and we talked about it in our coaching group with the escape girls and it is that sense of discomfort which is putting it lightly. Sometimes it's really uncomfortable that we want to instantly stuff something into Instead of sitting with the discomfort. It's like our reaction to being uncomfortable or having a desire and not meeting it immediately is problematic for us. We don't seem to want to wait. Yes, I don't know. What do you think about that?

Speaker 2:

You know what I think? Waiting is a lost art. I was thinking about this the other day. I was thinking about our grandparents and their grandparents and their grandparents and I was thinking about how much of their lives involved waiting and being still, you know, because life was so different than it is right now yeah, before, even before television. I was watching a show the other day that was taking place in a time period and in a place where, I mean, telephones were just barely being installed in a kind of a normal person's house, and it got me thinking about how much time people used to spend just in their thoughts and just waiting and just being quiet and just letting time pass. And how have we become so uncomfortable with that?

Speaker 2:

Oh yeah, our society is constantly saying do this, do that, eat this, eat that, look at this, engage with this. We it's like we never are just quiet. And another example of this is I live in a really, really old neighborhood maybe 120 year old neighborhood and we have all these wonderful front porches on. You know the houses in our neighborhood and I love porches If anybody knows me they'll know and I'm actually sitting on my porch right now. My porch is my office. Love, love, love the whole idea of a porch.

Speaker 2:

Well, how often do I see anyone sitting on their porch these days? Sitting on your porch means that you're just sitting out there, you know, you're just enjoying the day, maybe talking with a neighbor, but a lot of times it's just enjoying time, not even doing anything. And you know what? I'm not seeing people sitting on their porches hardly at all anymore, and I do. I love that you brought this up, heidi, because I do wonder about that. It feels like waiting and just being. It's a lost art, it's gone. The minute we don't have anything to do, we say we're bored and we fill it, yeah definitely so.

Speaker 1:

It seems as though we began to microwave food like decades ago and it wasn't done fast enough in an oven or on a stovetop. So we microwave ovens you know, that was a big deal but like now, even drive-thrus at fast food restaurants I mean, think about it, drive-thrus, fast food it's not fast enough. It's not fast enough and so now we can order ahead on the apps and people up and they'll bring it to us. It's like go, go, go, go go. We don't get that. This is a significant part of our physiology and that is God has wired us to be quiet, to be more still when we are in that place of parasympathetic. That's one of the two states of our autonomic nervous system. Our parasympathetic state is that place where it's social engagement, it is rest and digest. We metabolize food better, we absorb nutrients better and all is really well with our world. Our heart rate tends to be a little slower, our blood pressure tends to be better, all of those things go with that, and we eat slower too. That's really interesting.

Speaker 1:

And yet our societies go, go, go, go go and so many of us have gravitated into I can't be still, I can't be quiet, I can't wait. And how does that affect us? It affects us powerfully.

Speaker 2:

It really does. Yeah, it does. One of the times that I visited my dad in the Alzheimer's Center, when he first went in and he was still able to do a lot of things, I remember that there was like nothing to do, right. I mean it was like the most stress-free environment, because everything is done for you. You don't clean, you don't fix this. Not that that's necessarily a good thing, but I remember asking him how are you doing, dad? This was at the beginning and he said oh, I have so much to do, do I'm so busy? And I thought what you know?

Speaker 2:

But his whole life he has been so busy, going from one thing to the next, to the next. And so here he is at the Alzheimer's Center and, granted, his mind's not working very well, but he still had a sense of I've got so much to do, I can't just sit down and talk with you. I got to go, I got to get moving and I just. It's interesting to me how, even at the end of his life, when he's an old man and he's certainly earned his time of just sitting and enjoying a magazine in a chair but for him he still felt that pressure. I got to do, I got to go. I got to perform. He still felt that pressure.

Speaker 1:

I got to do, I got to go, I got to perform, and I really think that this shows up almost across the board. So prevalently when we have a heartache of some kind, our tendency like if somebody passes away who is dear to us our tendency is to get busy and try not to experience the grief. Kind of circling back to the overcome cravings class. If I have a craving, a desire, maybe it's because I have an emotion and I want to comfort myself. I am not likely, because of the way I've lived my entire life, I am not likely to sit with that feeling and to experience it and to go to God with it, whereas there's a lot of problem with that. What I'm likely to do instead is get busy and well, in this case, to eat, and then I end up feeling bad, that I ate my emotions and then I end up wanting to numb myself some more, either with food or getting busy or whatever it might be.

Speaker 1:

I really believe that a lot of those counterfeit comforts that we tend to lean into as a response to discomfort I think that we could manage those a lot better with the Lord if we could just stop and be still and know he is God. Maybe get compassionately curious for a minute. He is God, you know. Maybe get compassionately curious for a minute. What is this about? What is rising up in me right now that I want to stop and not feel? What is it that I'm trying to squelch? Maybe, like the holidays used to call it a silent hunger, and we want to stifle that cry of our heart. It's a hunger for something it really is, but is it truly a hunger for whatever food it is that we think we're craving? What does it truly need?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, such a good question I feel like we have as a society, we have become afraid to feel. I think we've been afraid to stop the busyness, stop the scrolling on social media, stop looking at things constantly the news and our bank accounts and you know. Stop all the texting and communicating that seems like it's taking up every spare minute that we have. It's like we've become afraid to stop and let ourselves think and feel.

Speaker 1:

I know I can definitely relate to that. I think that for me, this really began to be an even bigger issue for me when my first marriage was kind of going through some tough times. I began to dive into creating content for at the time, thin Within and working more and doing more and serving more at the time, thin Within and working more and doing more and serving more at the church, and doing all of these different things so that I didn't have to feel Because when I feel, I'm miserable and that's just not taking that feeling far enough and inviting God into it. Instead, I think I've just got to be about the Lord's work. Enough and inviting God into it. Instead, I think I've just got to be about the Lord's work. Well, maybe he wants me to process how I'm feeling with him, with him and truly be still and know he is God.

Speaker 2:

Yes, I was thinking about this just the other day and actually talking with someone about it in a little bit of a different way. But I thought about myself when am I most overwhelmed? When do I feel like I am afraid to have space to think or space to feel? And there's a couple factors for me. If I'm physically vulnerable in some way, if I'm in pain or I am not feeling well and, because of the chronic Lyme disease that I deal with, I become, it's like my capacity to feel comes down. It's like I to feel comes down. Yes, it's like I don't want to. Even my husband will turn on a movie and I'll say, oh, no, not that one, you know, that's too intense, no, let's do like a comedy, because it's like my capacity comes down. So that's one for me is when I'm feeling physically vulnerable. And then another one, of course, is if something in my life is shaking me or causing me to feel unsettled or unsafe, or you know, things are moving and shifting or something. There's a transition, those kinds of things, and then, when you put them together, I mean forget it. You know, I don't want to.

Speaker 2:

And then so I heard someone say this the other day that I thought was so interesting. She said in those moments I don't want to feel, and I certainly don't want to connect with the Lord because that goes too deep. I feel like he's going to take me too deep. And so we talked about that. I thought, oh wow, it was convicting for me because I thought about those times when is it that I'm likely to go to my phone or to turn on a show, or to go to food or to go to something else, some kind of distraction? You know, call a friend and you know, have these long conversations or whatever it is. When is it? It's when I'm feeling vulnerable, it's when I'm feeling unsafe and shaken. How about, for?

Speaker 1:

you Heidi. Oh, yeah, definitely when I know there are things like outstanding things that are out there that I know I need to deal with. I don't want to be still because, I sense that God is going to press in and say now, now, now, child, we want to deal with these now.

Speaker 2:

And I'm like no.

Speaker 1:

No, he says now, and I say no. He says now, I say no it feels overwhelming.

Speaker 2:

It just feels like I can't do this. It's too big.

Speaker 1:

It's too much. Well, and it's interesting because if we circle back to the whole sympathetic and parasympathetic thing for a minute, really, I mean you mentioned capacity and that's just a perfect word to use for it I have reached my capacity and, for whatever reason, I feel like I can't take. It's like a balloon that has been filled with a bunch of helium and somebody says just a bit more and it explodes. You feel that tension of that balloon and it's going to pop if any more is asked of it and really physiologically, we go into a state of overwhelm. And it is physiological.

Speaker 1:

It includes a heart rate, it includes all kinds of things being in that sympathetic state and we want to be able to regulate, go to God with it and say, okay, this isn't the way you want me to live, this isn't the way you want me to be able to be still and know you are God. You want me to be able to be at peace. You've called me. It's not just for heaven, it's for now as well. In those moments when I'm feeling this almost an agitation kind of rise up in me, whether I mean it's definitely likely to happen, if I know there's a lot of things I need to deal with that I'm not dealing with with the Lord, or when I'm feeling, like you said, vulnerable in some way. I want to be able to intentionally sit in that feeling.

Speaker 1:

I want to be able to do that intentionally, and so, rather than just stop it by stuffing it with something, I need to be able to sit there, like, grab a hold of whatever chair I'm sitting in and not move. And which sounds like torture to me. I mean it sounds like, but wait, I could. I'm sitting in and not move, and which sounds like torture to me. I mean it sounds like, but wait, I could be busy doing something for the Lord, I could be busy contributing to the ministry somehow.

Speaker 1:

You know how noble of me Sometimes. Sometimes I might even say it's time for Bible study and that sounds so good and noble.

Speaker 2:

but I can well, especially with a name like Heidi Beigelsma.

Speaker 1:

I can do that with my brain, my heart is far from it all. I mean, god says that he has issues with his people speaking with their mouths, but their hearts being far from him. I don't want to do that, and so, rather than using the scriptures or using my ministry work, or using whatever else as a way to avoid my feelings I mean, the Lord is in my feelings, he wants me to, he gave them to me right, he wants me to be able to process them- Well, and Heidi, you and I both have heard so many people over the years come to Thin Within, now, Revelation Within.

Speaker 2:

It's like they feel so much guilt and shame when they're in that place, People beating themselves up. It's like, well, I don't want to feel. Well, I don't want to go there. Well, I don't want to renew my mind. Well, I don't want to spend. Well, I don't want to go there. Well, I don't want to renew my mind. Well, I don't want to spend this time with the Lord. And it's like they feel bad about that, Like there's something wrong with them, when actually there is a void, there is a hurt, there's a need there. That's important. And if we can be compassionate and curious about that need and curious about that need, then it's like, oh, you know what? I'm human and I have a need. I'm actually feeling some deep sorrow right now. Or I'm really disappointed, or my feelings were really hurt last week and I never even looked at it.

Speaker 2:

I just swept it under the rug and that's where I feel like God is inviting us with patience and kindness and love. But this is what I will do. I will say, okay, lord, I'll meet you, let's make an appointment. How about five minutes? And I'll just choose a really short amount of time to start with, because it feels overwhelming and, like I said, my capacity just it's really low right now, lord, like, how about five minutes? How about three? And he says yes, and he's full of joy, and he meets me there for three minutes and then, if I'm done, I'm done, and that's okay. Sometimes it leads to more, I don't know.

Speaker 2:

I feel like I've always believed that if it's not half an hour, if it's not an, hour you know, if it's not a big chunk of time it's not going to count Right, but it does.

Speaker 1:

It does.

Speaker 1:

Every little minute counts with the Lord, and I think the predisposition of our hearts really matters in those moments when we're feeling that agitation rise up. We are noticing something and before we go and grab whatever it is, we're craving or avoid in some way, I want to encourage us. I mean, christina just gave us a great tip for solving this issue instead of stuffing it with something, just being willing to go to God for even three minutes and invite him in. Here's the thing that we need to be mindful of. When I choose to do something else with those feelings, what is going on inside of me? I don't like this discomfort or I feel grief and I don't want to sit here and cry because I'll be all snot-nosed and headachy, whatever it might be.

Speaker 1:

If I do something else with those emotions instead of inviting God into it, I'm actually, I think, short-circuiting what he intends through that heartache or through that difficulty to accomplish. He wants intimacy with me, and every time I have that sense of agitation, sense of sadness, or why am I feeling so lonely, or whatever it might be, that is an opportunity to build intimacy with God. Rather than running from God. What if I were to run to him, like Christina suggested, even for three minutes, and invite him to Lord. I invite you, help me to want to be here longer with you, instead of turn to my counterfeit comforts, because those don't do anything to help me solve this issue.

Speaker 1:

Whatever it is that's causing me these feelings, and only God can. I don't want to short circuit my relationship with God. I want to deepen and build that intimacy with him every chance I get. So when that feeling comes up, I want to say okay, I'm going to be compassionately curious, lord, I'm going to invite you in. What is this about and what can we do about it? I'm going to sit here and wait on you for just even a minute or two or three or five.

Speaker 2:

Yes, I remember when my mom died I felt like I don't have capacity for anything. I couldn't go back to work. You know, I was teaching at the time. I thought there's no way, I can't do that. You know, there was just all these normal type things that I do every day that were suddenly overwhelming to me. I just was really. I really struggled.

Speaker 2:

So I remember feeling that way, feeling like God was inviting me to come and sit with him and be sad, not just sad that my mom had died because she was an old lady and she really needed a new body and I know she's loving her new body, it's not that kind of thing but I was grieving not only that she wasn't on this earth anymore, but I was grieving the relationship, that a lot of disappointments and complications and things. Anyway, I remember that God was calling me and I would say no, no, you know, and I would do something else, go a different way. But then I started coming to my porch and things were going on in my house. There was busyness, people, the kids, all kinds of stuff.

Speaker 2:

And I would go to my porch and close the door and I would kind of sit in my rocking chair in a way where maybe I really couldn't be seen there, you know, like if you really couldn't see me through the window or whatever and that became my little spot and I would just sit with the Lord and at first I didn't say a word to him and I remember I just sat there, looked out the window, I just that was it.

Speaker 2:

And then I would leave and then I would come back and I felt like that was our spot for that season, that he was calling me to that rocking chair on the porch, and then the next time, maybe the next time or the next time, I would say a few words to the Lord, maybe listen to a song that brought some comfort, but that was a lot at first. Or maybe read a scripture that felt like a lot at first. Or maybe just talk to him about the weather. That's kind of where I started with him, because that was such a difficult time for me that my capacity to feel I mean just to feel anything was overwhelming.

Speaker 1:

Right, right, and sometimes I think I mean we've talked about this before, but not recently that I know of Sometimes, maybe in the moment, there is a demand on you, legitimately, that you can't stop in the moment, even though you have that feeling inside of you. So make an appointment with the Lord, and it doesn't have to be a long appointment. Let's say that you're rushing to get the kids or grandkids or whoever, off to school or whatever, and there's this agitation in you and you aren't able to stop and invite God in in that moment and a conscious, you know, aware, awake level. You know you can certainly in your mind do that, but it's not the same as being alone with him. Then make a plan for, okay, today, when the kids are at school, or before anybody comes home from work, or before I leave for work, or I get out of my car, or after I've gone shopping, I'll sit in the parking lot for a little while and make an appointment to meet with God and to ask him, if nothing else, here is the way I was feeling, what do you want me to do with it?

Speaker 1:

And so the idea is we don't want to build these occurrences of avoiding our emotions, of avoiding taking them to God, because a life of avoidance isn't a life of depth with the Lord.

Speaker 1:

There is nothing in our lives that he hasn't allowed to touch us. I mean some of it he has actually ordained, and I mean it's not all of it. I mean it depends on your theology and obviously I'm not going to go there right now, but I think every bit of it is an opportunity to build my intimacy with God and I don't want to miss out. I don't want to miss out, I don't want to build my intimacy with chocolate chip cookies that I crave and think, ah, this will help me feel better. Well, but does it For a moment? It does, it really does. But then what? I'm back to where I was when I got that feeling and that craving came over me and I gave into it. Only it's worse. It's worse, and we've talked about that so many times. But we want to sit in our uncomfortable feelings and welcome, welcome God in to do whatever it is he has in mind to do through it.

Speaker 2:

Well, and sometimes, when those feelings come up, I don't even know what they are, I don't even know what's going on. I just know that my body is responding in a way where it's like why do I feel so unsettled right now? Did something happen that I missed what's going on? And if I go to him just for a minute or two and ask him oh yeah, it was that comment in that phone call, oh, my gosh, that really affected me, lord, let's talk about that for just a minute and all of a sudden my body calms down, I feel better. I have processed it with him for just a couple minutes, kind of like a check-in, you know? Yeah, I was just thinking.

Speaker 2:

You know, heidi and I are ministry partners, but we're also best friends and she and I check in with each other all the time. How are you doing? What's going on with you? What are you in the middle of? How can I pray for you? Just quick check-ins, and we're safe with each other and we trust each other. So we can do that and it's so helpful. So I think about that with the Lord. You know he's my perfect best friend. So here are some practical ideas If you feel like you've kind of, you know, lost the art of waiting, waiting on the Lord. Here are some ideas that are practical, that you can grab a hold of and do on your own for just one or two minutes here and there and kind of build that capacity to be with the Lord, to check in with Him and to allow yourself to feel.

Speaker 1:

Close your eyes and listen to one worship song, or maybe even just a part of one, and then be still before the Lord. Afterwards Wait on him, okay so that's one.

Speaker 2:

Here's another one. Sit outside or walk and listen to the sounds of nature for a few minutes, for a few minutes.

Speaker 1:

Be still after that Wait on him Read or write out one verse from the Bible.

Speaker 2:

Be still after. Wait on him. Okay, here's another one Prepare a meal, thank God for it, and then just spend a minute or two waiting before eating. Wait on him.

Speaker 1:

Eat a meal from hunger to satisfaction. Thank God for the meal and be still for a minute or two before putting the dishes away.

Speaker 2:

Here's another one. A phone call or a text comes in. Invite God in before you respond in before you respond.

Speaker 1:

Sit quiet as you wait on him. Choose a scripture or a big T truth and use it as a breath prayer. Be still after, wait on him, okay.

Speaker 2:

And then here's one more Go to work the store, the post office, anywhere you would normally go, Be still in the car with the Lord for a minute or two before you go in. So these are just ways to practice being in his presence, practice being still, practice waiting on him.

Speaker 1:

And I would add one more to it, probably any one of these things could be used in this as well and that is make a bargain with yourself, perhaps that, okay, I have this desire to get up and do something, to not be still, to go eat something or to whatever it is. Make a deal with yourself that, okay, I can go do that after I have sat here for three minutes Really, it's that concrete, just being still, and then sometimes you may not even want to get up and go do whatever it is anymore, because it's taken that burden that agitation right off of you, and that's a beautiful place to be.

Speaker 2:

Yes, and it's okay to start small. Yes, it's okay to start small. Maybe you haven't been still before the Lord in weeks, or months or years. Start small, just start with a minute, and that's absolutely okay. We hope there was something here that was valuable for you today and that might encourage you Join us next time on our next episode of Revelation Within.

Speaker 1:

On the go, all right. Thanks for joining us.

Speaker 2:

Bye for now Bye, bye for now.

Lost Art of Waiting and Stillness
Embracing Emotions and Seeking God
Practicing Stillness and Waiting on God
Making Deals With Yourself