How’s Your Soul?
Three little words but a giant question. “How’s your soul?” he asked.
Not “how are you, how’s your week, or even how’s your heart.” How’s your soul?
I paused. I wasn’t sure. I hadn’t given much thought as to how my soul was. I was busy. I was tired. I was slowly moving out of a crazy travel/work schedule. But my soul?
“Is your soul weary? dry? discouraged?” He asked. “Is it light or joyful?”
“I’m in transition.”
I realized. My soul had been weary and tired.
I had been doing, working, and giving out of an empty tank. Struggling to get by on the little I had, still trying to perform and give to others out of the scarce resources in my arsenal.
You give out of the overflow.
We all know that intellectually. You can’t give to others, you can’t serve, love, or help in any real way if your tank isn’t filled up. But boy do we try.
Then in January I read this little post from Jen Hatmaker and started saying “no” more often.
That was a really good start. I stopped saying yes to anything that wasn’t a “HELL YES!” But I realized yesterday, while wondering how my soul was, I had only accomplished step one of the process. I had stopped giving out of my empty tank, but I hadn’t quite begun to fill it up either.
Coincidentally (if you believe in such a thing), I’ve been memorizing a couple verses from Acts.
Therefore repent and turn back so that your sins may be wiped out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord. (Acts 3:19-20)
I had created space in my schedule, but hadn’t yet experienced times of refreshing.
Last fall, I wrote a post about learning how to rest. And while all those ways of resting are good and we can certainly make choices that help us rest, what does the verse above tell us about the true source of times of refreshing? From the presence of the Lord. Not from restful activities, not even from going to church, or leading a small group, or talking to your friends about Jesus or what God is doing in your life, or reading the Bible, but from the presence of God.
Now, can God’s presence be found during those other things? Absolutely. But it’s His presence we must seek first and only. Those things are just a vehicle in which we can experience His presence.
When was the last time you experienced the presence of the Lord? When was the last time you were refreshed by His presence alone? He wants to meet you every day, every hour of every day. He wants to refresh you all the time, but you and I have to come to Him first. We have to turn from our selfishness, our stubborn independence, and turn to Him for refreshing.
My soul has transitioned out from weariness, but now I need to the Lord to refresh me. I need His presence to fill my cup. Then, and only then, can my soul be light and joyful, and overflow to the point that enables me to give, serve, and love others the way He intends.
How’s your soul? How’s your cup? Are you running on empty or is your tank full? What would it look like for you to be refreshed, truly refreshed, from the presence of the Lord?