by Katy Kauffman @KatyKauffman28
Cake pops. They were my undoing. Who can resist a ball of soft, thick cake covered in a thin layer of beautiful icing with drizzle? I gave in. Twice. First caramel, then strawberry. My hometown bakery is run by a Christian family who knows how to decorate cakes and cookies with personality and pizazz.
I could live on cake pops, but that would kill my diet. I need balance. How about cake pops and salads? After fifteen years of avoiding salads, I eat them almost every day now. I’ve learned how to balance my diet so that my body doesn’t react harshly to a splurge on sugar. Or fried chicken.
Our souls need balance as well. We need time with people and time alone, a to-do list that keeps us fruitful and rest that keeps us sane, an intake of encouragement and an outpouring of what God has taught us. Our souls also need a balanced diet—what we take in to our minds and hearts—and God’s word is what we need to take in to be healthy and satisfied.
“Why do you spend money for what is not bread, and your wages for what does not satisfy? Listen carefully to Me, and eat what is good, and let your soul delight itself in abundance” (Isaiah 55:2 NKJV).
Abundance. Sometimes ministry makes us feel lean. Spent. We pour ours souls into our writing and speaking, and we need replenishment.
As a ministry leader, it’s easy for me to get overwhelmed with the urgent and with what people need. Deadlines loom overhead, emails need to be answered, and I create my own stress. Instead of escaping the work altogether, I discovered that I can replenish my soul by going to God for nourishment. Time with God—fellowship with Him, meditating on His word, and talking with Him about anything and everything—is vital to a thriving heart and a thriving ministry. God calls for us to listen to Him, to take in what is good, and to delight in the abundance of who He is and what He provides.
For years, I have worked on books and blog posts in my quiet time. I found that the mornings give me the most inspiration and uninterrupted time to write. Then I discovered something. I was getting focused on the to-do list more than on time with God. I still wanted to seek His investment in my writing, because without it, what would I have to say? But now, if I work on a devotion or Bible study in my quiet time, I also take time to simply meditate on a passage of Scripture, just me and God. I try to listen to what He wants to tell me that day, and I pray that Scripture back to Him.
How often do we all focus on ministry even in our quiet times? It’s natural. Ministry becomes a part of who we are. It’s our life, as close to us as breathing. If we tend to focus on what we can give out to the exclusion of what we need to take in, we grow lean.
Instead, let’s slow down and focus on taking in the nourishment God wants to give us. Time with Him—just us and God—is an essential part of our soul’s balanced diet. Then we will remember why we’re ministering and have the energy and wisdom to serve God and His kingdom on this earth.
Nourish your soul with time with God, and flourish in the abundance that He provides. Eat what is good for your soul.
Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst. John 6:35 NKJV
About the author: Katy Kauffman is a Bible study author and teacher, editor of Refresh Bible Study Magazine, and a co-founder of Lighthouse Bible Studies. Her writing tends to focus on winning life’s spiritual battles, and she loves to compile books like Heart Renovation. Katy makes her home in a cozy suburb of Atlanta, Georgia. Katy makes her home in a cozy suburb of Atlanta, Georgia.
Her new release, Feed Your Soul with the Word of God is a banquet of thirty short Bible studies. Is your soul hungry today? Taking time to be in God’s Word is like pulling a chair up to a banquet table. God is the Master Chef, and the food on His table is ready and waiting for us. It’s full to brimming of what our souls crave–hope, peace, courage, direction, answers, solutions, wisdom, encouragement, and more.
Join the conversation: How has God’s Word filled your soul lately?