I was immersed in the quiet of central Pennsylvania.
I stayed with my daughter-in-law’s parents, who live roughly a third of a mile down a country road from where my son and his family live. They kindly put me up while I was there helping with the four boys, a gift that went above and beyond graciousness. It wasn’t just a place to stay; it was a haven of quiet.
I would walk from their place to my son’s at 7 a.m., while the moon was settling in for the end of its journey and the sun was rising. One morning, the full moon cast a golden hue across the land even as the sun rose in the opposite direction. The day began with the slow breathing in of freshness of life and light while the night quietly moved on.
This was quiet that living in the city hasn’t allowed me to experience. A calm that permeated the countryside. No sirens or honking horns. No cars driving by with the bass so loud it shakes your own vehicle.
I would close my eyes and feel wrapped in the peacefulness of everything being muted. No distraction or interruption.
Of course, I entered a home with four small boys, each with their own loud, insistent voice. But I was prepared for it because I’d had a bit of a sacred pause to just be.
We all need the chance to have that pause, a time to clear our heads and hearts of all the things that clutter them. The many issues we carry, for ourselves and for others, need to be released every now and again to refresh who we are. To remind us that we’re more than the noise around us, the concerns that consume us, the to-do lists that never end.
Soul care is a practice we often overlook because we don’t consider the need for quieting our hearts in a world that’s full of negative input and unfavorable comments about our character. Instead, we post triumphant pictures or quirky sayings to deflect the pain from our hearts.
Busy is a lifestyle we’ve deified. A concept we embrace because of all we accomplish. But we are far more than merely what we do. And though we diligently take care of our bodies–exercise, diet, sleep, minding our stress–we often fail to acknowledge that part of us that requires restoration.
Our souls are the very essence of who we are. It’s the spiritual part of a person that is immortal, that will live on after our bodies quit. Choosing to deny the existence of our own souls doesn’t diminish our need to care for them.
Souls reflect how we’re each made in God’s image with intellect, emotion, and a will; they’re easily crushed by the fears and anxieties of the world, so caring for our souls is an essential part of our overall health.
“Guard your heart ABOVE ALL ELSE, for it determines the course of your life.” Proverbs 4:23
God tells us that life comes from the heart, and our ability to handle the challenges of every day comes from strengthening our hearts with God’s truth and power, in a relationship with Him. He alone can give us purpose and perspective when life gets loud and chaotic.
We are people with very tired hearts.
Isn’t it time those hearts rested?