Beyond Borders

courage. faith. action.

When the Soul Breathes Quiet.


31 days a writing challenge


It is Saturday morning and thanks to my wonderful husband, I got to sleep in for a bit. This sleep was much needed as the week was full of on the go errands and endless nights of toddlers not wanting to sleep and then waking much too early.

One thing my body does not do well is handle and process stress. Whether it be physical or emotional it does not recover well. It may takes days to gain back strength from one day spent running errands. Even with the extra sleep this morning my body is tired, longing to crawl right back into that bed. Every muscle fatigued and bones aching, my body sits in a slump as I type. My fingers stop every few words and rest. Oh how they long for rest.

Knowing the toll that physical and emotional stress take on my body makes it that much more important to find the quiet in the chaos. Not just the quiet that gives my body rest. But the quiet that gives way to freedom. The quiet that unlocks your spirit and allows your soul to breathe.

Without this quiet no other form of quiet will be satisfying.

This quiet takes place only when you are practicing the presence of God. When every moment of your life is filled with the acknowledgement that He is in control. No matter the storm that is raging around you, He. Is. In. Control. That no matter what is happening in your life it is of no surprise to God.

This practice takes practice. Every single day. If you do not take time seeking His presence in the good and quiet times, it will be difficult to find Him in the chaos. It is that simple and it is that complicated.

The complicated :: Finding the time to seek Him when each day begins with chaos as soon as your feet the floor.
The simple :: Make a plan. Make it flexible enough to bend around the chaos. Flexible enough to squeeze in the cracks of a day that is running at full speed. Stick to your plan.

Finding the way that brings you into His presence, is unique to all of us. In his study of Philippians, Matt Chandler said for him to feel near to God, to feel His presence, he needs to study the Word, really study it. Spreading all the reference books and commentaries across his desk and digging in deep. But, he has a friend that just turns on his music, whether listening or playing he worships and this is all He needs to draw close to God. Just as we are uniquely created, finding our way into His presence is equally unique.

Let’s stop for a moment. Do not get me wrong, I am not saying we are not to be reading God’s word daily. Because we are, it is the only way to get through life. Right now I am talking only of what little thing you can do to bring Him close to you, right in the middle of your chaos.

I know what the simple things that draw me close to Him, much like Matt Chandler’s friend, it only takes a note of a song, a string of words, the sunlight coming in slanted, the rustle of the leaves as the gentle breeze blows, and I see Him. My breath slows, shoulders release as I feel Him pull me even closer. Because I looked for Him. In all the chaos, I sought Him out with all my heart. I have my eyes wide open and my ears tuned to His whispers.

And just like that, there is quiet in the chaos.


This is day four in 31 one days of finding quiet in the chaos. To view the whole series click here.

Author: Shelly Richardson

A stay at home mom, married to my best friend, who loves like Jesus. Together we have four beautiful daughters. One biological, one adopted and two by way of marriage. Our 12 year old daughter was diagnosed with Aspergers syndrome when she was 6 years old and our youngest was diagnosed with autism at 3 years old. I have dealt with chronic illness most of my life and at times has been debilitating. It is through this illness and the special needs of our children that drew us closer to God. Beyond Borders is the place where I write out my story of living beyond my borders. A place to share of God’s love and grace, His mercy and sovereignty, and what that looks like in my own little world of chronic illness and autism. A place where courage and faith intersect and He moves me to action. My hope in writing is that you find something that inspires you. Encourages you. Makes you smile.

2 thoughts on “When the Soul Breathes Quiet.

  1. This is such a great reminder that we truly can find quiet in the chaos. Even though I know how much I need it, I often neglect that need. Thanks for choosing this lovely, encouraging topic.

  2. This post is absolutely beautiful and so encouraging. I used to practice meditative prayer and need to get back into it. I felt such peace when I did. This is a great reminder to me to slow down and pause in His presence. Thanks for this beautiful post! Love your blog!

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