Ever wish you could stop time? As in, literally snap your fingers or push a button and have time stand still? Watching your baby daughter grow up right before your eyes, attending a family reunion knowing you won’t see each other for another year and wondering who will be gone then, starting your last semester of college, waking up to the first day of vacation…there are a lot of examples of situations when we might wish we could stop time and just linger for awhile.
Our hurried lives often leave us wishing we had such power. If only I could stop time, I just might get all these things on my “to do” list accomplished. If only I could just slow down the day, I could cram in all the things that I have over-committed to. If only the sun would stay up a little longer, I could meet everyone’s demands for my time and attention.
Did you know that there was a time in the Old Testament when someone actually asked God to stop time…and he did?
Joshua 10 (The Message)
12-13 The day God gave the Amorites up to Israel, Joshua spoke to God, with all Israel listening:
“Stop, Sun, over Gibeon;
Halt, Moon, over Aijalon Valley.”
And Sun stopped,
Moon stood stock still
Until he defeated his enemies.
13-14 (You can find this written in the Book of Jashar.) The sun stopped in its tracks in mid sky; just sat there all day. There’s never been a day like that before or since—God took orders from a human voice! Truly, God fought for Israel
The battle for Gibeon was set to end at sundown. Joshua’s military forces did not have night vision goggles, high beams, or even flashlights. In order to defeat the five kings of the Amorites, he needed more time, so he prayed that God would give him that. God heard his prayer and prevented the sun from setting until Joshua had finished his battle.
What battle are you in today that is suffering from your hectic, over-rushed life? Where has your hurry turned into debilitating worry, preventing you from relaxing into a moment and being present in the present? Hurry-worry is soul crushing. Are there things in your over-committed life that can be shed so that you can live in real time without so much stress?
Sun, stand still. Moon, stay put. We call on God to give us the tools that enable us to slow our frantic pace and attend to the meaningful priorities that will bring us closer to him, closer to one another, and closer to peace. This means allowing God to set priorities according to his will, and being willing to LET GO of anything that doesn’t fall into his prioritizing. Are you ready for that?
What do you need to do today to make that happen? Don’t let the sun go down before you do it.