Every soul operates similarly to a car dashboard. It tells us when we are tired, when we are revving the engine, when we are operating on all cylinders, and when we are empty. Our souls are really healthy gages that connect our heads with our hearts. In certain seasons, our heads might say, “I need to work harder and go faster,” while the heart says, “I need to slow down.” In other seasons, our hearts may say, “I feel so refreshed” and our heads might say, “This is what I was created to do- it’s life-giving.” The key is getting the heart and head in sync…and I believe much of that is allowing the Holy Spirit to help you be in tune with yourself and hear the voice of God more clearly. There’s a name for this…Soul care. I believe soul care is God’s gift to us so that we can glorify and use our gifts for God. It’s not possible to run on empty and fully glorify God. Steve Gladen says, “It’s possible to do ministry at such a pace that your work for God can destroy the work of God.”
John Ortberg in Soul Keeping says, “The best place to start doing life with God is in small moments.” Soul care is one of the greatest elements that fuels the ministry we do because it stems from who we are in Christ. So, how do we instill these small moments of rest and wholeness in our lives as Small Group Point People? And how do we lead in such a way that we give others permission to do the same? There are a few basic things I do on a regular basis that might seem small but are helpful next steps towards living a life with healthy rhythms of soul care.
The bottom line is that God wants you healthy, and he wants you to flourish. So, you need to do the things you need to do to make sure you are staying healthy and maintaining that health. None of us are perfect at it, and we all have to start somewhere.
- Get Adequate Sleep– Sure, your body can go off of less sleep but after a while, it actually snowballs and then you can’t catch up. Get enough sleep to the point where you feel rested, and you don’t need that extra cup of caffeine!
- Don’t Cheat the Sabbath– I once had someone tell me in college that if I didn’t have enough time to take a complete Sabbath day and step away from my assignments and projects, just do a half day here and a half day there. IT DOES NOT WORK. Don’t try it. It builds up and over time you feel like you never have a full day of rest. If you give God 1 devoted day to him, He can do more with your 6 days than you can in 7.
- Continually Learn– Find a new book. Take a new course. Learn a new hobby. Find something that will continually keep your mind and heart engaged, active, and creative. I have found when I do this, it actually helps me be in a learning posture with Scripture too.
Soul care is all about these moments we prioritize in our lives to help us be the best version of ourselves. At the end of the day, if you don’t rule your calendar, your calendar will rule you. Make time for soul care as we do the same with maintenance on a car before it begins to affect the engine.
How are you being the best version of who God has created you to be today?