Silence, Stillness, and Centering before God (2 minutes)
Prayer for Presence
Lord Jesus, I believe you want to speak to me in deep and profound ways this moment. May I be attentive to your loving and merciful voice.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Psalms 23:5
There are two kinds of people who’ll never understand your need to take care of yourself: 1) Legalists. They never stop trying to measure up to certain perfectionistic moral, ethical, and religious standards. 2) Serve-a-holics. They sacrifice themselves on the altar of endless church activity, believing it’s the only way to please God. Some of Jesus’ disciples did this. When a woman poured expensive oil on His head they got upset. How come? Had they never read the words, ‘You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows’?
In Bible times oil was used for different purposes such as soothing, massaging, and refreshing the body after a long journey or a hard day’s work. ‘So God thinks it’s okay for me to take a break?’ you ask. Yes, but since serve-a-holics have a need to be needed, like the disciples they think, ‘This perfume could have been sold at a high price and the money given to the poor’ (Matthew 26:9). Their belief system is: ‘Others matter – I don’t!’ Understand this: When you take care of others but not yourself, you a) become spiritually and emotionally drained; b) end up resentful because your needs go unrecognized and unmet; c) start looking for relief in the wrong places.
That’s what drove Samson to Delilah’s house. She gave him a place to relax and let down his hair; then she exploited it for his destruction. When we look to the wrong people and things rather than learning to care for ourselves, we give a foothold to the enemy. Don’t let that happen to you. Start taking care of yourself spiritually, physically, and emotionally.
Heavenly Father, help me to not feel guilty about taking care of myself. In Jesus’ Name, Amen
Space for Reflection (take 2-3 minutes to be silent or write out your thoughts or prayers from the scripture passage or devotional)
The Lord’s Prayer
Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.