The Key to Refreshment: Remembering
Part of the Refresh series.
I know what it is like to wake up in the morning so tired that it hurts. I know what it is like to be so utterly drained in the physical, mental, and spiritual realm that I just do not know how I will make it one more day. To feel so depleted, that pouring out to the kids I minister to seems like an impossibility. If that is you, I have good news.
God will not abandon you to weariness.
Notice that I did not say that He would not allow you to get weary. He will allow you to get weary, most definitely. He needs you to come to the end of yourself. He needs you to go beyond the breaking point, to the place where you are desperate, for Him.
Yes, God allows you to get to a place of weariness. But He does not intend to leave you there. He brings you there with every intention of meeting you. If you are at that point, take heart and be encouraged. The Lord has great things for you.
Psalm 84:6, "When they walk through the Valley of Weeping, it will become a place of refreshing springs."
This is possible for you. You may be walking through one of the hardest and exhaustive seasons of your life. But God can take your “valley of weeping”, and turn it into a “place of refreshing springs.”
Something Bill Johnson once said has stuck with me and encouraged me in times of weariness: “You must return to the place of the last outpouring.”
Simply return to the place of refreshment.
God must first and foremost be your source. Not your friends. Not your family. Not your pastor. And not the kids you minister to. I believe that these people can be used as tools to bring refreshment, but they cannot be the ultimate source. Only God can play that role. Allow Him to be your refresher.
This may look different for each individual, but for me it means remembering the times of refreshing I experienced in the past. Being that I am a writer, I record every significant (and insignificant) event that takes place in my life. I have a million journals, but one in particular is set aside for my “God encounters.” In it I have chosen to write down and record every significant moment I have had with the Lord. It starts with my story of God's redemption in my own personal life. From there, its pages are filled with prophetic words, visions from others and ones I have seen. Dreams that I have dreamed during sleep, and also the ones I have in my mind regarding my future. Prayers of hope, brokenness, joy, discouragement, sorrow, that are followed by praises for His answers. Tears have marked the pages and smeared the ink, as I thanked Him for once again coming through. Scripture verses that have rocked my life decorate the pages as a declaration of Truth.
This journal has become a treasure, one of things that I would grab if my house were burning down. Why? Because when I turn through the pages of documented “God-encounters,” I am refreshed. I read it to be reminded of God's faithfulness to me. When I forget and get discouraged, and wonder where God is, I read it in order to recall how truly wonderful my He is, even if I cannot feel it. When I feel like He is distant, I want to remember His touches. When I doubt who I am or the life that I am living, I want to see what He has said about me and to me. And when I am weary, desperate for refreshment, I read it to remember.
If you are weary and discouraged, you need to return to your place of refreshment. Think back to the times in your life when you did feel refreshed. If you haven’t recorded experiences like this, start now. Ask the Holy Spirit to bring to remembrance anything that He has done for you in the past that needs to be recalled. As you do, you will be reminded of His nearness and you will begin to once again taste the manna from Heaven. Remember, eat, and be satisfied.
Where do you find refreshment? Can you remember a time or place that refreshment found you? Where was that place?
Consider participating in one of our training/networking groups starting the week of September 24th. Finding refreshment is not outside your reach. If you have a computer, a webcam, and an internet connection you can meet in one of our google hangouts. You have options, and they are so very convenient.
Check out Jenny's blog at www.mydoubleportion.com to read more of her writing.
Jenny is passionate about encouraging other people to find intimacy with the Savior. She hopes that you can see Jesus in her, particularly through her writing. She works full time as a hairstylist as well as an assistant for her father’s business. Jenny is also a full-time college student, majoring in Literature and Writing Studies. She is a “self-proclaimed” writer, but is getting her degree so she can be a “real one.”
She has been doing youth ministry at Foothills Christian Church for seven years. She started doing a jurnior high group with sixth graders, and has followed her girls all the way through to their current senior year. The most prominent struggles of her life took place in her high school years, and she has used her testemony to tell of God's faithfulness.
Some random quirks about Jenny: She has abnormally small feet, and can fit into kids shoes. She is very proud of the fact that she can get a pair of Tom’s shoes for $20 cheaper. She eats “fishies” (Pepperidge Farm Goldfish crackers, yes, the ones that are served in pre-school), every single night, and keeps a large box handy by her bed. She loves coming up with nick-names for people…and things. She named her laptop Alex, her car (a red jetta) Ruby.