“Ugh, I never do anything for myself?”
Ever hear yourself saying this? I admit I have heard those words coming out of my mouth more times than I’d like.
Sometimes as women we can think it is wrong to do something for ourselves. In fact, we can think we have to be falling apart for it to be even a little bit ok. We feel like it is selfish or self-serving. And when we finally do take the time, the guilt alone is enough to keeps us from fully enjoying the thing.
Can I get a witness?
Girlfriend, we got to get a grip on this “taking care of ourselves” guilt. Our families, marriages and self-talk are suffering.
Mom guilt is brutal.
The phrase self-serving has a negative meaning in our church cultures. God did not create us to be selfish. That’s true. However, He didn’t create us to be self-defeating either.
So what’s the answer?
Using phrases like: “If Mumma ain’t happy, nobodies happy” and “I’m gonna lose it if…” don’t work. They just sound like threats and no one benefits from throwing fear around.
What we need is to define our soul needs and give ourselves permission to take care of them.
Soul- Your soul is the unique part of you that makes you-You. It’s your mind, your will and your emotions. Your personality likes and dislikes. Another way to put it is: your thinker, your chooser and your feeler.
Serving– Webster’s Dictionary defines serving as: Providing for needs or to meet the requirements of something or someone.
What’s that look like?
The picture of serving is one of giving.
Now, Jesus was the most giving, selfless person ever. And no one would call Jesus selfish.
Yet. He could be found walking away from a crowd to get alone. To pray, seek God’s will or just sleep. Giving His soul these things provided Jesus with the peace and strength He needed for the raging storms that came His way.
When caught in a storm, would Jesus have responded to the disciples like this?
“Ugh, It’s not my fault it’s storming, quit your whining”. Nope. He did not.
He didn’t fake peace by singing “It is well with my soul” either. It really was well with His soul. Why? Because His soul was well, not stress and frazzled. Jesus didn’t feel guilty taking time to rest and renew his soul and neither should you.
Permission To Serve your Soul
So, stop the guilt trips on yourself and everyone else. Permission has been granted.
I know you out there. Some of you are still thinking its not going to be “ok” to take time for your soul.
You take care of your body by eating, right?
It is admirable to go to church to nourish your spirit.
Likewise we need to tend to our souls.
Taking care of your soul actually helps us serve others better. Friend, you just can’t speak life and peace from a soul that is tired and frantic. For out of the heart the mouth speaks. We cannot give what we do not have.
Ways to Serve Your Soul
Serving your soul doesn’t involve rebellious actions or demands. It isn’t stomping off and planting your face in Twitter for hours either.
Only you can know what will serve your soul well. Take time alone with God to address your needs and desires. Then get with the people who can help make those things happen and share what’s in your heart.
Soul Serving Examples
-Famous artist Georgia O’ Keefe tended to her emotions by creating art.
“I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn’t say any other way, things I had no words for.”
-Expand your mind by studying a topic that interests you.
-Listen to some good music. It doesn’t have to be a hymn.
-Go outside and just sit. Be fully present in the moment.
-Get alone and write a list of things your thankful for.
Whatever the answer, do it. Toss the guilt. You can have a happy soul today.
What are some of the ways you’d serve your soul if you had permission to do it? Got a friend that needs a little soul serving? Share this post with them.