The Importance of Practicing Soul Care as Well as Self CareMar 01, 2022
We hear a lot about self care these days. And who doesn’t like a nice pedicure with a leg massage, or maybe a facial? I’m also soothed by a scented crackle-y candle, and a warm cup of tea. These are all wonderful things we can do to relax and care for ourselves and I’m sure you have other favorite ideas like a long walk or a workout.
I think it’s even more important for us to explore the idea of soul care. A lot of what we do to keep our souls refreshed and healthy is very similar - but I think that the one main difference is our intention. 1 Timothy 4:8 tells us that “... the training of the body has limited benefit, but godliness is beneficial in every way, since it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.” So let’s talk about that godliness that comes, in part, from soul care.
Proverbs 4:23 Guard your heart above all else, for it is the source of life.
Solomon wrote these words to his son, instructing him to put first things first. Christ followers understand the importance of putting God first, and continuing to walk in His ways. When we do that it helps us care for the very essence of who we are - our souls. Three takeaways that I find in this verse are that to properly care for our souls we need to:
- Be alert - being on guard means that this is a continual process, not a one-and-done.
- Be wise - consider what tasks and priorities need to be put “above all else”.
- Be careful - if our hearts are our source of life, we should treat it with great care.
Matt 16:26 For what will it benefit someone if he gains the whole world yet loses his life? Or what will anyone give in exchange for his life?
We have so much stuff to do! There’s always some chore that needs to be done, someone who needs to be cared for, food to be cooked - the list goes on and on. We should we make soul care a priority so that we can:
- Be humble - we need to be sure that we aren’t striving for things that will never satisfy.
- Be trusting - know that God will never leave a true need unfulfilled.
- Be obedient - don’t exchange the truth of God for the lies of this world.
The primary reason for soul care, to me, is that when we take care of ourselves we are better equipped to continue to care for others. Galatians 6:2 says that we are to “Carry one another’s burdens; in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.” It’s like when you get the safety lecture on the airplane before takeoff. The importance of putting on your own oxygen mask before you try to help anyone else can’t be overstated!
Whatever responsibilities are pressing on you right now, I hope you’ll take some time to put on your spiritual oxygen mask and practice some Soul Care. It’ll help you and all of the people you are called to serve.
Looking for more wonderful stories? Or just looking for more ways to get into the action yourself? Check out my resources page for more information.
Get updates on my story right to your inbox, along with suggestions for how you can get out of the audience and into the action!