Suggested Reading: Hebrews 4:11-13
To you, O Lord do I lift up my soul—Psalm 25:1
The day ended up being perfect for getting some much-needed yard work done. We didn’t start out with that in mind but as the day progressed it seemed not only the best way to spend it, but just what was needed. As we cleared away scattered sticks and fallen branches, leaves that had been the last to come down just before the first heavy snow fall, and various debris from the winter months, a little yard work turned out to not only be a productive way to spend the afternoon but surprisingly therapeutic.
Yard work that clears away dead leaves, clutter, and debris, soul-work or tending that clears away emotional, mental, and spiritual debris. Sometimes we need to do a little Soul-Work and tending. Soul-Work begins with the knowledge that the soul may be housed in the physical body but is much bigger than that. Acknowledging that the soul does not tolerate much clutter and does not like feeling burdened or weighed down with any type of debris. Our soul is always trying to move us toward wholeness and toward God. During soul-work deconstructs inner turmoil, sorts through inner confusion, quiets the noise and inner rumors, untangles the mental, emotional, and spiritual mass that has us weighed down, tightly wound and encumbered us, and reconnects us to the source of our soul’s life and well-being.
King David was good for doing soul-work, or soul-tending. How often he sought God, the creator and sustainer of his soul for help and readjustment. So many of David’s psalms reveal his activity of doing soul-work:
When his soul was troubled David cried out to God (Ps. 6:3); he sought God for counsel when his soul was disturbed (Ps. 13:2); he asked God to restore his depleted soul when he is felt broken (Ps. 23:3); He lifted up his soul to God for its help (Ps. 25:1); He prayed for the well-being of his soul (Ps. 25:13); He asked God to guard his soul (Ps. 25: 20); He asked God to bless and renew his soul with his holy presence (Ps. 42:1,11). When David’s soul was disturbed or sorrowed, in need of healing or strength, to be released from sin and the feeling of dirtiness he knew exactly where to go, to whom he should turn, it was to God alone (Ps. 51). David showed his willingness to be vulnerable before God, to let God know his soul was drained, weary, in danger of being suffocated by the darkness and evil of this world. David’s soul-work and tending reminds of us the prophet Isaiah’s, reminder that the Lord does not seek to break an already tender reed or put out the last life-breath of a smoldering spirit, but instead, eagerly attends to it and applies the needed balm for healing, refreshment and renewal.
As the sun set, there was a feeling of satisfaction to look out over the work of the day. It did not matter it would have to be done again at some point, but the satisfaction of knowing it could be done; no matter how often it was needed. That clutter could be cleared with the right tools and a little effort. A feeling not unlike the one we get after the soul work and tending has been done. When we close our Bible or lift our head from prayer or say our thank-you to the one who has blessed us with godly counsel and wisdom. The feeling of a lighter, more enlightened, unencumbered, refreshed, and renewed soul. It does not matter that we will return; in fact, we should return again, but peace and contentment knowing we know where to go and with just a little effort and desire the outcome is guaranteed. Let’s Pray
Dear God, what a gift you have given us, the gift of soul-work or tending that holds so much blessing. By it we are blessed, renewed, liberated, lightened, refreshed and reconnected to you. Thank you, Father for the many ways you love and care for us physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen
Pastor's wife, mother of four adult children, grandmother, Devotional Writer, Motivational Speaker, Avid Encourager. Inspiring others to live their best life in Christ. Inspiring new confidence and courage, giving hope, renewing the soul and coming alongside through daily, biblical encouragement.