“Find rest, O my soul, in God alone,” David prays in Psalm 62:5.
Is your soul at rest? Are you living in Jesus’ “easy yoke”? (Matthew 11:28-30). God’s peace is elusive for most of us! We may struggle with worry, irritability, or jealousy. Or we may keep ourselves busy all the time.
Why don’t our souls find rest in God? Because we want to be in control of our lives.
One thing that we especially tend to want to control is our emotions. We don’t want to feel things like sadness… neediness… loneliness… fear… chaos… anger. So we deny or avoid these feelings.
The result of denial is that whenever we slow down and become quiet, the uncomfortable feelings that we’ve been repressing come to the surface. Then we find ourselves overwhelmed with the “secondary emotion” of anxiety (e.g., worry, irritability, jealousy).
Submit to God and Be Free!
The Psalmist models for us the resolution to our restless living: Stop trying to control things and submit to the Lord in all you do. I love how Paul says this in the New Testament: “Let the peace of Christ rule in your heart” (Colossians 3:15).
To be at peace we need to learn to accept our emotions before God, sharing openly and honestly with him. Often we do that in community. This is why the Psalms are not just for private devotional use but are primarily meant to be prayed and sung with others. As Paul says in 2 Corinthians 5:20, often people need a “Christ’s Ambassador” to help them be reconciled to God and experience his friendship.
As God’s grace gets inside us, working its way through our negative emotions and unhealthy habits then his grace can flow through us to others.
Talk to your Soul
To enter into the graciousness of God’s rest we need to learn how to talk to our soul in prayer. The Psalmist does this continually. Take a few minutes to pray with David: “Find rest, O my soul, in God alone.”
I love to pray Psalm 62:1, 5 as a Breath Prayer:
- Breathe in slowly as you whisper or think: “Find rest, O my soul, in God alone…”
- Then as you exhale whisper or think: “Selah.” (“Selah” in the Psalms means, “pause to reflect.”)
More Breath Prayers
To pray a short verse or paraphrase of Scripture as a Breath Prayer is refreshing and empowering. It helps you learn to practice God’s presence all day and stay in tune with the peace of Christ. I’ve selected key verses of Scripture and developed step-by-step instructions for meditation, breathing rhythms, and prayer in “Breath Prayer Guides.”