Finding Refreshment

Our Iowa heat wave has me reminiscing about the heat and humidity of my Tennessee, childhood summers. We had a two-story (split into four-levels) home with only two, window unit air conditioners —one in the dining room (2nd level) and the other in my parents’ top level bedroom.  I guess my father felt the units were strategically placed since cold air falls, but they really couldn’t keep up with the demands of Memphis summers. After some hard, outdoor play, I can remember heading in for a drink of water or Kool Aid and then lingering in front of the window unit. The cold air from condensation-laden vents came as a welcome relief from an afternoon of play outside.  Refreshed, I would head back out for some more games of baseball, kickball or army with my friends, Steve and Kendall.

What are you doing to find refreshment for your body, soul and spirit? I have received some unsolicited (but caring) advice about my need to make sure I have some times of refreshment built into my schedule. The fact of the matter is, we all need to make sure we have that refreshment…not as an excuse for laziness but as a way of re-energizing for service to the Lord. In Exodus 31, Moses concludes his time with God on Mt. Sinai and the Lord said this:

16 The Israelites must observe the Sabbath… 17 It is a sign forever between Me and the Israelites, for in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, but on the seventh day He rested and was refreshed.

If God “rested and was refreshed,” might we not also need to experience the same?

The most essential and primary way to experience refreshment comes from repentance. Peter said in Acts 3:19:

Therefore repent and turn back, that your sins may be wiped out so that seasons of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord.

Repentance from sins is a necessity for ongoing, unrepentant sin causes our fellowship with the Lord to be interrupted. Intimacy with God is compromised just as it is in a marriage when a spouse will not admit and make steps of restitution following an indiscretion. Thus, repentance may be your first step back to needed times of refreshment.

More on “refreshment” next time.

Points to Ponder

  • Are there any actions or attitudes in your life from which you need to turn in order that a floodgate of needed refreshment might open onto your life, enabling you to experience the presence of the Lord, again?
  • Think of a time of personal, spiritual refreshment. Did repentance precipitate the refreshment?

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