During this season particular words and phrases have come to the fore. We really mean it now when we say, “Take care” or ,”I hope your well” or “stay safe”. We are hyper vigilant about a whole manner of things and rightly so we want to stay healthy. Looking after our physical health is paramount but what about the health of our souls? The soul is the heart of a person, their character, personality, beliefs, love’s, losses and life’s experience. The Bible highlights its essential role : Beloved I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers; 3 John 1v2. In truth who we are on the inside turns up on the outside. We may look to others to care for our soul, a kind word of encouragement here or a sense of value or worth there but the real job of soul care is ours. We must become the shepherds of our own soul its essential to the quality of our lives.
Soul care is not an invitation to self obsession, our soul will never flourish when self absorbed infact it always finds its greater vitality when seeking to live beyond self interest. Absolutely soul care requires a measure of self awareness but it invites us beyond such to a greater revelation, God Himself. Living reunited in love with God through Jesus is the foundation and catalyst to any abundance in our soul. When Jesus offered us life it was indeed this He is offering. A life where our soul so prospered its spilt out into every area of our lives. So how do we begin the adventure of into shepherding our soul. The Psalmist David offers some spiritual direction to those seeking guidance; ‘My soul, waits silently for God alone,’ (Psalm 62:5). David identifies the greatest spiritual warfare in his life is who will win the war for the attention of his soul. He aspires to teach his soul to silently submit to God. He is teaching His soul to be quiet, demanding the noise stops, the distractions abate and room is made for the presence of God. David in silencing his soul instruct it to focus on God. He commanded everything within him to bless the Lord. He is telling every conflicting emotion to be quiet. Soul care must begin from a place of rest It must be centred and saturated in the nature character and person of God. We need to live in rest and learn to live from rest So often we rest from work, not work from rest. Soul shepherding is spiritual intelligence, its God centred living, its abiding in the reality of Gods peace, His presence and the person of Jesus. From this view point we can see the world differently, from Gods perspective and we can be ourselves courageously. All this is necessary before we can truly love others effectively.