What does Be Still Really Mean?

Be still and know that I am God. Psalm 46:10 is one of the most quoted bible verses of all time. It’s easy to find plaques, pillows, mugs, t-shirts, etc. with this verse on them. Psalm 46 is a powerful reminder of who God is and the power that He has. For example, in verse one, we read “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.” 

As the psalm goes on, we learn about God. And then we get to Psalm 46:10. In this verse we stop hearing about God and instead hear directly from God. 

He says, “Be still, and know that I am God.”  Psalm 46:10a

Psalm 46:10 is often taken out of context. So, in today’s devotional, we are going to learn more about it. The three key phrases that really stood out to me in this verse are: He says, Be still and Know. 

He Says

God is the one speaking here. He has all authority over heaven and earth. God’s voice is what is breaking through as He addresses the nations. When God speaks, we need to stop and listen. 

Be Still

The next phrase is Be Still. Psalm 46:10 is often taken out of context. When you hear the term ‘Be still’ you probably think of sitting there all still as you wait on God.  This is a great thing to do and one that we need to do daily. But the ‘Be Still’ in this context is different. The focus is more on who God is and how we can depend on Him. 

According to the NIV Study Bible, the Hebrew phrase “Be still” probably means “Enough!” How often does God say this to us? We start to worry, fear or doubt when we are going through a tough time. God doesn’t want this for us. He wants us to pay attention to Him. Enough worry and fear. Enough doubt. Enough. Put your eyes back where they belong.

I love the Message version of this verse which speaks to this point. “Step out of the traffic! Take a long, loving look at me, your High God, above politics, above everything.” We need to Be still and take a long, loving look at God. 

Other translations of Be Still include “stop fighting” (CSB), “stop your striving” (NET), or “cease striving” (NASB). These translations remind us to stop worrying or trying to fix everything since we can’t control it anyway. We need to stop trying to solve our problems and instead surrender to God. God is at work in our lives and the world even when things seem out of control.

The phrase ‘Be Still’ is not only in the old testament. In Mark 4:35-39, we step into the story of Jesus calming the storm. In this story, we see Jesus saying the same thing His father did in Psalm 46:10. Be Still. Jesus is in complete control of the wind and the waves. He spoke and they had to listen. Again, no matter what is happening around us we need to remember God’s power and character.

Be Still


The last phrase that stands out to me is Know. To know means to acknowledge. We need to acknowledge at this moment that God is God and He WILL be exalted in all the earth. He will use what is happening in our country for our good. God will use whatever situations in our life we are going through for His good and His glory. God’s mighty acts in our lives point back to Him. 

Let's Pray

He says, Be still and Know. Three simple but very profound phrases. Let’s pray. 

Heavenly Father, please teach me to be still and completely trust You. I want to listen when You speak. Teach me what it means to take a long, loving look at You. Instead of doubt or fear, I want to be still before you and trust that You know what you are doing. I want to acknowledge that You are working in my life even when things seem like they are falling apart. Thank You, Jesus. I love You, Lord. In Jesus' name, Amen. 

Reflection Questions

As you reflect on God’s Word, take some time to answer these questions. Please share your answers to any of the questions in the comments below. Thank you! I look forward to hearing from you. 

  1. What area of your life do you need to be still (stop fighting, cease striving)?
  2. In what area of your life do you need to acknowledge that God is God and He will take care of you? 
  3. Share what it means for you to take a long, loving look at God. 

Keep Your Eyes on Jesus

One of the ways to keep your eyes on Jesus is by reflecting on God's Word. One of the ways I do that is by using Scripture verse lock screens and desktop wallpapers. As I work on my computer or look at my phone throughout the day, I have God’s truth in front of me. I created some lock screens and desktop wallpapers using several Scripture verses. I would love to share these with you. My heart is to encourage you to keep your thoughts fixed on God. 

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  1. Ana Buckley on September 1, 2022 at 3:06 pm

    What area of your life do you need to be still (stop fighting, cease striving)?

    Motherhood! It seems like I am trying to do my best on my own. But it’s proven to fail over and over. I can see God being so patient with me through this.

    In what area of your life do you need to acknowledge that God is God and He will take care of you?

    In everything around me. I strive too much thinking that I can do it all by myself. It’s so wonderful that God is truly in control. I can trust in Him and surrender. I got too lost on the worries of this world and forget how simple and wonderful it is to just abide.

    Share what it means for you to take a long, loving look at God.

    To rest in His precious presence all day. No matter what I am doing. Just being in awe in everything I do of how great He is.

    • Anastasia Corbin on September 1, 2022 at 8:23 pm

      Ana- Thank you so much for sharing! I love your thoughts. It is so wonderful to just abide. I know I need to do this more.

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Welcome, I'm Anastasia!

I am a daughter of the King of Kings, wife, mom, friend, and bookworm. I love to encourage women in their everyday life. I also feel passionate about sharing God’s word. My desire is to provide a place for you to fall deeper in love with Jesus and be refreshed. I am so glad you are here! I hope you’ll stick around and enjoy reading these blog posts.



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