CARE For Our Souls
May 27, 2020
Last week I introduced you to D.A. Horton and his ideas about Soul Care. He believes that it is important to develop vibrant daily rhythms of soul care as a way to care for ourselves so we can care for others. He pointed out that doing this is impossible if our soul is cluttered with junk. How do we get rid of the junk? We CARE for our souls.
As I said in the last letter, Horton used the letter C to represent Creating space for God, which we can do if we get rid of our ANT’s, our automatic negative thoughts. He then goes on to the letter A which means Appreciating low hanging fruit. Don’t take anything for granted. Be grateful and thank God everyday not only for what you have, but also for what you do not have. So this week I wrote in my gratitude journal that I was grateful for buttons. I had never thought of being grateful for buttons, so I figured that was a good example of low hanging fruit. I then increased my list substantially by adding the things I am grateful for not having. Obviously I am grateful neither I nor anyone in my family has contracted Covid-19 or any other terrible illness. I am also grateful that I can’t go to the gym anymore because now I am walking every day, enjoying God’s creation. And if things are really not going well, if I need to complain to God, that is okay, too, because I can be grateful that I can go to God with my problems.
Next, Horton says a way to care for our souls is to Reach out for help when we need it. For some of us, this means swallowing our pride and asking God to remove our fear of doing so. AA literature says, “We are obliged to choose between the pains of trying and the certain penalties of failing to do so.” In other words, your life may remain unnecessarily difficult if you don’t reach out, while at the same time it might be emotionally difficult to reach out for help. Since there is difficulty either way, why not choose the way that might result in a better outcome?
The final letter in CARE is E for Encouragement of ourselves and others. Often times it is easier to encourage others than ourselves. One way to encourage ourselves is to imagine we have an identical twin who we love very much. How would we encourage that twin if he/she were going through the same things we are going through? We not only need to be a cheerleader for others, but also for ourselves.
I heard someone share that we are all cells of God and that God is in all of our cells. When I heard this, it became much easier to take care of myself in a loving way. I used to be confused about Jesus’ command to love your neighbor as yourself, because I did not love myself, nor did I take care of myself because I thought it was selfish to do so and because I was so busy caring of others. Now I understand that it is God’s will for me to take care of myself in every way so that I can be of maximum use to my fellow human beings.
With peace and love,