November 26, 2018

Live Alive {Day 26}: Recharge

Previous posts in the Live Alive series can be found here.

Self-care is a hot topic these days.  Modern life is bonkers, so we look for ways to take care of ourselves in the midst of the hustle and bustle - because if we don't, we might just go crazy.  No joke.  At the heart of it, I believe this practice is wise.  We can't serve others on an empty tank.  But I find that my attempts to find rest in what this world has to offer always come up short.  There is something in our souls that needs something "me time" can never quite satisfy.  (Though I'm always down for a massage.  Just sayin'!)

One thing you need to know about me, if you don't know me well: I do not know how to rest.  I know how to make a plan to be productive.  I know how to get really distracted and do unproductive, but not restful, things.  When I get a chance to have "me time," my first thought is What can I accomplish in the x number of hours I have?! I believe my personality is a gift in many ways.  I appreciate many aspects being the way I am.  But I am learning the pitfalls.  I have got to learn how to rest if I want to live alive!  This may not be the case for you, but hang in with me, because I think what I'm going to say is universal and also applies to those who are blessed (from my perspective, haha) to have the opposite personality type!  The world needs us both, by the way; and I need to learn from you how to rest, and I can teach you how to make a list and stick to it.  <wink>

I spent the last two weeks, between Love God Greatly Bible studies, reading the book of Luke.  Y'all, Jesus is NO JOKE in the book of Luke!  He comes across as harder than hard core to the reader, and totally calls His followers to the same.  But there was something else I noticed: 

Jesus stopped sometimes.

He pulled away from the crowds.

He made the time, even early in the morning.

Jesus recharged;
and He did it in prayer.

But he would withdraw to desolate places and pray.  5:16 
In these days he went out to the mountain to pray, and all night he continued in prayer to God. [and then He chose His disciples!] 6:12 
On their return the apostles told him all that they had done.  And he took them and withdrew apart to a town called Bethsaida.  9:10 
Now about eight days after these sayings he took with him Peter and John and James and went up on the mountain to pray.  9:28 
Now Jesus was praying in a certain place, and when he finished, one of his disciples said to him, "Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples."  11:1 
And he came out and went, as was his custom, to the Mount of Olives, and the disciples followed him.  And shen he came to the place, he said to them, "Pray that you may not enter into temptation."  And he withdrew from them about a stone's throw, and knelt down and prayed .. "  22:39-41

How many of you turn to prayer first thing when you need some self-care?  Yeah.  Me neither. I mean, the very name implies that you're trying to take care of yourself yourself.  But even in the midst of a restful activity, how hounded we can be by guilt, failure, fear, anxiety, doubt, anger, hopelessness, and so on!

Jesus withdrew to pray.

If the God-man needed to connect with the Father to be able to do live alive, I feel confident we ought to follow His example!

Please don't misunderstand me.  I think that doing things we love and find relaxing are wonderful!  Get that massage; go for that run; treat yo'self to that manicure; watch some Netflix; grab coffee with a friend!  But remember that, ultimately, only Jesus can lift the weight of the world off of our shoulders in a soul-rest kind of way.  He is the Prince of Peace.  Only the Lord can direct our path in the way of righteousness.  He is the Wonderful Counselor.  Only Yahweh is our sure protection from the evil one.  He is Almighty God.

I'm not an expert on prayer.  Like I told you: I know nothing about proper rest!  But I do think one huge thing prayer does to recharge us is to remind us Who is in charge.  Prayer - simply talking with our Father about anything and everything - not only fuels us for service, but fill us with joy, as we remember who God is, what He is capable of, how He has provided for us, the depth of His forgiveness and love, and so on and so forth.  Humbly taking our place as dependents sets our soul at rest and sets our hearts free.

Do you know how Jesus replied to the disciples that asked Him how to pray? (Luke 11)

And he said to them, "When you pray say:
"Father, hallowed be your name.Your kingdom come.Give us each day our daily bread,and forgive us our sins,for we ourselves forgive everyone who is indebted to us.And lead us not into temptation."

I guess we should begin our live alive recharge from that place of humble dependence.  God will take care of the rest.  (See what I did there?!)

Pray on!
Heather 💛

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