I don’t know about you, but all good ideas come to me in the shower. Maybe because it’s the only moment in the day where I’m not consuming information. With the exception of the memorized instructions on back of the shampoo bottle, the shower really is my only quiet and (mostly) uninterrupted time alone. This is where I have a chance to ponder my day and wonder at the things of God.
I sometimes let myself get into this mundane pattern of consuming and creating, bringing in and giving out, collecting and dispersing, without stopping to pause and ponder it. I try to make it through the day as productively as possible. I like to have a list of things I did that day to pat myself on the back and feel deserving of sleep that night.
It’s prideful really. And I don’t think it’s the way God designed us.
If we were to continue in this pattern for our whole lives, we would find ourselves very, very tired. God rested after all that He had created, not because He had lost any power or strength, but because He is our example to follow, and He knew we’d need it. I doubt that God hid in his room (room? sure, why not?) or made a list of things to do tomorrow or flipped on the tv. This is a different kind of rest. One that is holy and set apart, designed precisely for us: eternal beings created in His very image.
This isn’t “vegging” or wasting the day away like many people *raises hand* spend their Saturdays. It’s an intentional rest. A time to stop trying to preform and just sit and soak up God’s goodness.
We are filters. Bringing in and giving out. We watch something, do we talk about it? We hear something, do we share it? We eat something, …well, you know. Our whole life is based upon the rule of cause and effect. When one thing happens, another thing follows. After awhile, just like any good filter, we can become full of gook (gook?) and grime and we need a cleaning.
There is something to detoxing your body I’m sure, but what about detoxing our souls? It’s time to clean out the gook.
My pastor once told a story that has stuck with me since. He talked about a wicker basket being filled with water. Picture the pitcher being poured out into the fragile, hole-filled basket. He asked us this question: “what happens to the basket?” While I was sitting in the soft auditorium seat being analytical and stuffy and thinking things like, “well eventually, the wicker would bloat and it would probably hold the water…” he simply said, “Guys, it gets clean.”
In this story, the water is the word of God. I have not been getting enough of it for sure and I can feel my filter becoming fuller. My efforts are beginning to wane when it comes to output. It’s blocked by all of the things that wiggle their way into it, but don’t quite make it out the other side. I’m not producing like I want to because I’m not allowing God to comb through and clean everything in me first. This can be true in every part of my life at the moment.
I think this is the wisdom in fasting. We need a refresh time, a break from the input of information to our brains so that our brains can catch up and process.
It’s time to put that little spiny pinwheel up (or hour glass, whatever, I’m not a hater) and take a breather. Only then will there be enough room for more processing. Only then can we begin to more clearing hear God’s voice. Only then can we begin to have peace in our relationships. Only then can we feel confident in our faith. Only then can we begin to be courageous with our lips. Only then can we be present enough to effect change. Only then can we reach people for Christ.
I’ve decided it’s about time to clean my filter. May the Holy Spirit lead me.
How about you? What do you do to “detox your soul”? How has God spoken to you in those times of rest and peace? How can I pray for you?
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