Be Still My Soul

photo (3) I am not a very good patient. This past week my foot was operated on to remove a piece of bone that should not have been there. I woke up to the prettiest green cast I have ever seen.

As we all know, the purpose of the cast is to hold everything around the injury in place to allow for healing….it protects the wound and sutures so that the good that was done through surgery is not taken away by careless disregard of the wound. In essence, all of the  hustle and bustle that my foot would normally experience on any given day is stopped… it is haulted…it is quieted and the proverbial “can’t come out to play today” sign goes up and everyone understands to just leave it alone to heal. The colorful cast communicates volumes to those “less aware” people who might demand my foot to get going and have fun again before the healing process was complete.

Wouldn’t it be nice if there were a cast for your soul that you could create instantly around you when you were troubled and in need of serious spiritual or emotional healing? I love the words to the song “Be Still, My Soul” by Katherine A. von Schlegel. The first and fourth verses are inserted below:

“Be still, my soul: the Lord is on thy side. Bear patiently the cross of grief or pain. Leave to thy God to order and provide; In every change, He faithful will remain. Be still, my soul: thy best, thy heavenly Friend Through thorny ways leads to a joyful end.

Be still, my soul: the hour is hastening on When we shall be forever with the Lord. When disappointment, grief, and fear are gone, Sorrow forgot, love’s purest joys restored. Be still, my soul: when change and tears are past, All safe and blessed we shall meet at last.”

The conscious act of slowing down the moving pieces of your life to a point where you can “be still” creates a venue where inspiration, peace and understanding may not only be manifested but also gain significant traction towards a deeper healing. Though a soul that needs to “be still” may not blast out the same warning that a bright green cast will send out, those who pay attention will get the message. The need for a still soul is recognized by your closest friends and it respected by most.

However, unlike the physical wound in my foot that needs protection from activity and the outside world,  spiritual and emotional healing often occurs best when someone else crosses our path and lends his/her counsel, love and advice. The idea of “being still” does not necessarily mean that we need to “be isolated” because often the salve that our wounds seek are delivered by the kind hands and thoughts of a caring person.

Perhaps when we need to be emotionally and spiritually healed, we should wear our symbolic and protective cast and slow down but let it be a porous and flexible one. By forcing our “soul to be still”, we can reduce the kind of activity that distracts and reduces our ability to cope, while inviting in the type of activity that brings focus and empowers us to heal. Unlike the cast on my foot that has a fixed and known time that the doctor told me to wear it, a still soul simply needs whatever time it needs and often we do not know what that is. A good friend is just there for whatever time is required.

HighFive Your Life Principle: The bright green casts used for physical healing are easy for us to see and we respect the need for healing. The signs of emotional and spiritual healing require a little more attention to see but still need to be equally respected. By allowing and helping this person’s “soul to be still”, and offering our love and care and time, we may be part of the healing process that is so badly needed. A big part of caring is just being aware.

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