I can sense when I haven’t done enough soul care. My thoughts and subsequent actions are fleshy. Once I recognize that, it causes me to look around and realize that I’ve drifted into the shallow end.
Regardless of what my flesh wants, my soul craves deep water.
I have a friend who is working his way through some of the great hymns of the faith as a part of his devotional time. He’s copying the lyrics, looking up the writer’s history and the context in which each song was written. As he tells me about it, his face expresses joy.
That’s a great way to live deeper.
Other friends have worked their way through some of the great creeds and catechisms of the faith.
It’s another great way to do a deep dive.
The last time I went fishing with a buddy, I had my own little dock. I set up my lawn chair and cast my line into the still water. It was so still that you could see a reflection of the clouds in it.
My phone didn’t get service out there, which allowed me to be fully present in the moment. Birds sang. Fished jumped. And the breeze caressed my skin. As my heart rate slowed, it would’ve been difficult to miss God in all of that, making the trip so satisfying, even if I did only catch a fish or two.
Living deeper is a conscious choice to not stay in the shallow end. It’s knowing what’s good for your soul, then engaging in it as you unplug from everything else for a while.
That will look different for everybody.
One of the ways I’ve learned to do it is to read the Bible in smaller chunks. I’ve worked my way through Bible-in-a-year plans and there’s something to be said for that, but when I do it, it feels like I'm water skiing on the surface of the text. It’s just too much, too fast.
Spurgeon once said this: “Some people like to read so many [Bible] chapters every day. I would not dissuade them from the practice, but I would rather lay my soul asoak in half a dozen verses all day than rinse my hand in several chapters. Oh, to be bathed in a text of Scripture, and to let it be sucked up in your very soul, till it saturates your heart!”
I don’t know about you, but reading a quote like this makes me want to slow my reading pace even more.
How do you feed your soul? I’d love to hear your specifics. Just click the reply button and let me know.
As we set our minds on the things of the Spirit, we can reenter our daily routines and responsibilities (that tend to run at a fast pace) with a different mindset — one that is anchored in gospel truth.