Renewed…

As the deer pants for streams of water,
   so my soul pants for you, my God.
My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.
   When can I go and meet with God?

Psalm 42:1-2, NIV

Easter has arrived with great fanfare, as it should.  Probably our highest holy day of the entire year has now been celebrated.  If you’re anything like the wide range of people in Christian ministry I know, you have tackled things like Lenten observations, season-focused Bible studies or children’s lessons, Passion plays, Seder meals, Easter egg hunts and other large undertakings.  All of this is intended to make it a more meaningful, cognitively appropriate, spiritually rich time of the year.

Now that you have poured yourself out, even if it was only to get your own loved ones through the holiday, my question is, What are you doing to recapture your own intimacy with Jesus?  While I can find myself fed and energized by pouring into others, watching them blossom from significant spiritual experiences, I also have times where investing all of my time and energy in their growth can leave me sapped.  A time like Easter is more prone to be one of the seasons where those of us in ministry can find ourselves wrung out.  Being mindful of that, we must be more deliberate about seeking to refill the tank.

That renewal can look like something different to each person.  For some, it means “coming apart before you come apart” (My wise old Pastor Don is famous for using this phrase).  Leaving town, getting away physically to recharge may be optimal to recover from a demanding season.  For others, that escape may not be possible.  Reading a book that refills the tank spiritually or emotionally can be remarkably refreshing.  Being intentional about spending less time working for the Lord and more time at enjoying a favorite hobby can actually renew as well as serve as an act of worship.  God loves to see us spending time doing what He created us to do!

Whatever the choice is, do a little introspection to see if you may be in need of that refreshment now that we’ve reached the Easter landmark.  Are you finding your fuse a little bit shorter, your exhaustion a little bit heavier, your brain a little more foggy?  We’re of little good to others and certainly don’t reflect God’s glory much when we’re burned out ourselves.  Pray about how to get yourself renewed.

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