Now, how do we walk that path? Jesus gives us the invitation. We read his words, we pray to him. You see dutiful belief in God and his commandments might change our behavior, but it will never bring us soul rest. Jani: But do you love me? Jani: We will find soul rest when God becomes more than duty to us. When he becomes delightful to us, we need to ask him to help us.
We need to ask him for that kind of delightful abounding love.
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The Bible says God always answers that kind of prayer. Seek and you will find knock and it will be open to you. For everyone who asks receives and the one who seeks, finds and to the one who knocks, it will be opened. Change my heart. Jani: Absolutely. It will feel like duty at times. It does for me at times, but more and more it becomes delight. I think of it even in our marriage relationships, those of us who are married know that all of marriage is not delight. More and more. It becomes delight. Heidi: I love that. Thank you. His eyes, I like that vision of his eyes flashing back and forth.
God is eager to bless. Who is he eager to bless? Those whose heart is blameless. Now, of course, blameless does not mean sinless. None of us are sinless, but that means wholehearted completely his desiring him as delightful, not just as dutiful daughters. God gives strong support to those who want to delight in him. And how do I stay there? Tell me, Heidi, if you, if you think this is right. Heidi: I mean, yes. Jani: Yes, yes. Heidi: I remember when I was diagnosed with cancer, I felt those two questions before me. So change my heart from this bitternes to one of trusting you that you treasures for me through this hardship.
How old was Gideon? Heidi: So when I had thyroid cancer, Gideon was three months. James was Fort James was 17 months and Hannah was three years old. Jani: Tiny, tiny babies. Three under three. Just a newborn. Of course you struggled. Oh my goodness, how hard. Jani: One of them is that we live in a broken world. I know I am! From broken teacups to broken relationships, I want to fix things. And so I work really hard at building that picture-perfect world, and I ended up, at the very least, exhausted and sometimes I even get a little depressed or angry.
Why does the world turn out this way? Why is my life turning out this way? Heidi: Yes, on so many levels, from the vast ones, like cancer that we were talking about, to simple ones like dogs barking in the middle of the night or neighbors doing something to hurt our feelings. Jani: Yes. Or, you hear of teenagers getting in a tragic car accidents. Heidi: Or husbands leaving their wives and friends playing around with other men. Or we lose our jobs and our stock market accounts fade away. Or sometimes our, at my stage of life, retirement.
Those dreams can go up in smoke because of financial loss. Heidi: Yeah. Heidi: It is! Sometimes I have to think about it with my grown children, and now they are having all of their children.
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From the halls of Congress to our own churches… Heidi, all we want to do is be happy and live peaceable lives. Why is this world such a mess? The only place where we can learn the truth about our broken world is in the Bible. Jani: Now, some people, and I found myself slipping into this at times, some of us think that the Bible is just a book of rules. And they show us how life works best, and we can embrace those rules.
Abiding is keeping. But it is not my keeping. My job is to not wriggle away from His grasp. To not resist His hold on my life. Next step: Write a prayer thanking God for His strong and loving hold on your life. Ask Him to teach you to abide in that love and to not wriggle away from His grasp. For me, it was time chock-full of family visits, writing, and volunteer work. How about you? During January I often take time to evaluate the year before. So today I took a few minutes to check out what interested you—my readers—most in Here are your favorite five posts! Reread and be reinspired!
Sometimes I struggle with prayer. How to pray. What to pray. When to find time to pray. And how on earth can I accomplish prayer without ceasing? Check out this prayer that has been used for centuries. I want to be an encourager, but I sometimes struggle with how to be supportive. This post gives a few ideas. Soul rest. The kind of rest that calms our hearts. The kind of stillness that cancels out the craziness of this world like noise-cancelling headphones wipe out any pandemonium around us.
This post introduces the concept of soul rest and the habits that can lead us into that rest by drawing us into the presence of the Lord. Find out what that is in this post. This post was inspired by a devotion I read by a tenth-century monk on the four degrees of love. Click to read about these four degrees of love and how the fourth degree allows us to love ourselves so that we can love others well.
Next step: What do you most need today? Help with prayer, encouragement, soul rest, dissatisfaction, or loving yourself? The past few weeks have been a whirlwind of activity. Then I visited my mother for a few days, came home, did some laundry and repacked my suitcase. I left the next morning for Indianapolis where I attended a conference and a board meeting. Those nine days were jam-packed.
Filled with learning and working. Crammed with laughter and conversation. But there was very little whitespace. It is the key element of design that gives balance to a composition, transforming a cluttered collection of objects into an aesthetic expression of what we do see. It longs for space to taste beauty. To breathe. We all need whitespace in our lives.
Space for the soul to breathe. You might wonder, but how can I find this whitespace? My life is exactly as you described. There simply is no whitespace! I understand. And my words are not meant to drive you to book a guilt trip on the next train out. Start by remembering that Jesus longs to spend time with you.
He desires to give you the peace and strength you need in your overwhelmed life. Come to Him to receive His grace, and not to check off one more thing on your overfilled to-do list. Create whitespace for your soul to connect with Jesus. Even if it is only for a few minutes in a busy day, come away and rest awhile. Next step: Choose one of the four ideas above to create a little whitespace in your life this week.
Which one works best for you? We risk harming our health and losing our sanity! I encourage all of you to take time to rest. To spend some time with family and friends. To connect with Jesus. To help you find the soul rest that comes from connecting with the Savior, I am listing some of my favorite resources for finding spiritual renewal.
Pick one and use it this week! Here are the resources, with links and a favorite quote from each:. And we need to keep coming back into His presence to get our supply replenished…If we fail to stop and draw from His fresh, infinite supply of mercy and grace, we will find ourselves having to operate our of our own depleted, meager resources. Speak Your shalom over my heart. I wait silently…patiently. Spiritual rest is a journey of awakening our hearts to fully receive. He asks us to come away with Him so we can pour out the messy contents of our hearts.
He beckons us to time alone so he can give us what we need.
The Father invites us to solitude so we can hear His whisper above the noise of the world. Click To Tweet. You do. Although soul care may seem like a luxury, it is actually a necessity for your well-being. When your spirit is tired and worn, your physical self suffers too. You are less able to be the generous and kind person you want to be.
Your heart cries out for more Jesus. The kind of rest that would calm my heart. The kind of respite that would obliterate the restlessness in my spirit. The kind of stillness that would cancel out the craziness of this world like noise-cancelling headphones wipe out the pandemonium around me.
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In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength. Isaiah Next step: Choose one resource to explore. Schedule time this week to rest in the presence of God. What is enough? Do you find yourself constantly searching for more? And yet when you've attained more, it still doesn't feel like enough? Enough for Now will help you escape the insatiable quest for more by finding "enough" in God.
Preorder now and receive the book on June 4! Examine God's Word with me to find your next step of faith. Delivered by FeedBurner. Sharla Fritz discover soul rest. Sharla March 27, Is there dream or goal that I have that is not in Your plan?
Come, Sit, Stay: Finding Rest for Your Soul
Is there a hobby, activity, or organization that I need to give up in order to spend more time with You? Jeremiah He is ready to give us more than we have ever dreamed. Filed Under: soul care , Spiritual disciplines , surrender Tagged With: submission. Sharla March 13, Here are some simple ways to practice Gratitude this week: Keep a gratitude journal. Thank God for the little things. Thank Him for your furnace or your air conditioner, depending on what you need today!
As you go through your day, thank Him for your comfortable bed, your coffee maker, your amazing cell phone. Use social media.
Use this modern tool for good! Each day post a picture of something you are thankful for. Try Bible journaling. Record prayers of thanksgiving in the margins of your Bible next to verses on giving thanks. Make your own gratitude psalm. Read Psalm and use it as a model to thank God for all He has done in your life. Filed Under: gratitude , prayer , soul care , Spiritual disciplines Tagged With: gratitude , prayer. Sharla March 6, Several years ago, one of our church members suggested that our congregation try prayer walking. Prayer walking? We were talking to God. May You grant them health.
Philippians He instructs us to pray for others. James He invites us to pour out our hearts to Him. Selah Psalm Why try prayer-walking? Here are some ways to try Prayer Walking: Prayer Walk through your neighborhood. Like my church did, pray for the people who live near you. Prayer Walk through your workplace. Romans NIV community dependence contentment. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up. James NIV God reward.
Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Colossians NIV gentleness patience compassion. Pride brings a person low, but the lowly in spirit gain honor. Proverbs NIV pride. Humility is the fear of the Lord; its wages are riches and honor and life. Proverbs NIV reward awe. If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. Who is wise and understanding among you?
Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. James NIV wisdom life mind. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.
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Matthew NIV rest learning. Before a downfall the heart is haughty, but humility comes before honor. Finally, all of you, be like-minded, be sympathetic, love one another, be compassionate and humble. God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him.