That may sound like a strange question, but I think it is the most important thing I could ask you. (And no, it is not acceptable to answer, ?fine!?) So, how IS your soul?
Our souls are our true identity; who we really are; our faces when we take off the masks we wear in public (and sometimes even when we are alone). We can spend our whole lives with our souls hidden, out of sight; running away from them; living at a distance from who we really are.
This time of physical separation could have both positive and negative implications for our souls. Loneliness and isolation can lead some of us to very dark places that negatively affect our thinking and lead to heightened anxiety or depression ? pushing our souls even further under cover.
On the other hand, this time apart could also act as a barometer for our usually well-hidden inner selves. Extended times of solitude and temporarily altered patterns of life can, if embraced, reveal important truths about ourselves: our go-to defenses; our hidden insecurities; our knee-jerk reactions to stress, anxiety and threat. By paying attention to these behaviours that seem to play out as automatic and ingrained, we gain valuable insights into who we really are, and who we want to become.
In Psalm 103, King David writes a song that isn?t addressed in the usual way to God as a prayer. Instead, it is addressed to his own soul – reminding him who God was, and how living in the truth of a relationship with Him that had the potential to alter the king?s life; to experience the reality of being forgiven, redeemed, satisfied and renewed; to be saved!
Praise the Lord, O my soul;Psalm 103:1-5
all my inmost being, praise His holy name.
Praise the Lord, O my soul,
and forget not all His benefits-
who forgives all your sins
and heals all your diseases,
who redeems your life from the pit
and crowns you with love and compassion
who satisfies your desires with good things
so that your youth is renewed like the eagle?s.
My hope is that you don?t just try to ?get through? this time of isolation and uncertainty, but that you take advantage as it provides you with the rare opportunity to take a pause from normal life, and pay attention to the part of you that is most true. If you do that ? if you choose to live in truth in the midst of your relationship with God and those you are close to ? then the Holy Spirit can do all the wonderful things for you that David writes about in here in Psalm 103. You too can be: forgiven, redeemed, satisfied, renewed, saved!
Salvation isn?t just about spending eternity with God. It is also about receiving the gift of a healthy soul.
Many of you are aware that Tracey and I were scheduled to be on Sabbatical from now until September as I began my studies at Tyndale University in Toronto. Our current reality has caused the sabbatical to be postponed, however I have begun studies at home and will continue with them as I continue to provide worship experiences for us, and remain available as your pastor. If you would like to talk for any reason at all, please don?t hesitate to contact me.