A couple weeks ago I started jotting down notes for this blog on Soul Care. About a year ago, I had my soul care down. I would even share with my friends that they too needed to take time for soul care in their schedules. Soul care for me would include things like working in my yard, going on walks by myself or with someone else, and attending yoga classes alongside traditional practices like reading Scripture and prayer.
Fast forward a year later, I am laying in bed for the last three days because I have not been taking care of myself. I was exhausted and sick and I immediately had to slow down and rest. One day while lying in bed, my husband asked “Dawn, are you ready to slow down yet? Your calendar and our five kids schedule rule your life!” This was an eye opener to me, that I was not focusing on soul care for myself.
I know that when my soul is healthy, I am able to form healthy, meaningful relationships. On the other hand, when I am not healthy, I find it more difficult to form these relationships and care for others. This is why pursuing emotional, mental, and spiritual health is so important. For example, soul care gives attention to healing a wounded heart and maintaining spiritual health. God cares for the whole of our being (2 Corinthians 1:3-4), and one of the ways that we can minister to others is to encourage their spiritual health. God wants us to be holistic and all of our being to be healthy (3 John 1:2).
Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well. (NIV)
This week I had to rest in God’s grace. I was burnt out! If we aren’t satisfied in our relationship with Jesus, then we will burn out from serving others and serving God. God has wired me to be a doer and a helper, so if I see a need I’ll generally try and meet it… even if it doesn’t fit into my schedule! This just adds more and more busyness to my life and gives me anxiety. In fact, one thing I have realized after this week is that I have been so busy I’ve been missing my regular bible reading. I wasn’t making time for that rhythm in my life, missing out on time spent meditating on God and his Word. I would wake up in the morning and my schedule was go, go, go!
Spending time with God while praying and reading Scripture is such an important way to receive soul care. Reading the Bible isn’t a race, so we don’t need to feel the pressure of getting it all memorized immediately! Start with a small passage of Scripture and start working to pray it and get it into your heart! This will also help you memorize it!
When my sister and I were in high school, we would read a passage of Scripture and memorize it while running on our morning jog. Through this week of being sick and being forced to slow down to rest, I was able to spend time with God and renew my walk with Jesus. I had to remember who I was in Him. Sometimes the list we create for our days are often beyond the ability of what we can manage. This only causes us more anxiety and the busyness of life gets in the way of our own physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health!
So remember whose you are. God created you, Jesus redeemed you, and the Holy Spirit sanctifies and empowers you! Give your soul some rest and draw close to Jesus... for He alone is your true source of health and care. Rest in Him!