Refresh. During a recent FCA Camp for collegiate student-athletes, I was privileged to facilitate a group for the FCA Chaplains and FCA Campus Ministry Directors who brought the athletes to camp. Rather than have these adults lead the groups for the collegiate athletes, the camp director asked me to lead this group so as to refresh them. I was thrilled to have this privilege for the second consecutive year.
In one of our small group discussions, we chatted about how their souls are refreshed. We all have our souls worn down by busyness, urgency, disappointment, demands, and the more draining aspects of ministry in sport, but what refreshes your soul? Let’s consider what it is to be refreshed and how we may experience that regularly.
Refresh - verb (used with an object)
• to provide new vigor and energy by rest, food, etc. (often used reflexively).
• to stimulate (the memory).
• to make fresh again; reinvigorate or cheer (a person, the mind, spirits, etc.).
• to freshen in appearance, color, etc., as by a restorative.
Think for a minute about the people, moments, foods, drinks, books, movies, music, and places that refresh your soul. Go get some of that, soon.
The Apostle Paul wrote about how his friend, Philemon, refreshed the souls of people in Colossae at Philemon verses 4-7. “I thank my God always, making mention of you in my prayers,5 because I hear of your love and of the faith which you have toward the Lord Jesus and toward all the saints; 6 and I pray that the fellowship of your faith may become effective through the knowledge of every good thing which is in you for Christ’s sake. For I have come to have much joy and comfort in your love, because the hearts of the saints have been refreshed through you, brother.”
Philemon verses 4-7.
Ø The prayers of your mentor. Do the prayers of your mentor(s), and the mention of them in a letter refresh your soul as they surely did Philemon’s?
Ø Love and faith toward the Lord Jesus and all the saints. Does the development of these matters refresh your soul?
Ø Growing understanding of all we have in Christ. Do you find refreshment in sharing your faith as Paul told Philemon to expect it?
Ø Joy and comfort from love. Do you provide joy and comfort to your friends, mentors, and colleagues? If so, you are refreshing their souls.
Ø Refreshing the hearts of the saints. Philemon did this, do you? Who provides that sort of refreshment for your soul? Get some time with them.
You may have thought of refreshing places, foods, drinks, situations, or other things. I hope you also thought of refreshing people, groups, and occasions. Expect your heart to be refreshed by nurturing relationships with mentors, with peers, and with those whom you serve. Therein is new vigor and energy. They will stimulate and refresh your memory as to God’s faithfulness and goodness. They will reinvigorate and cheer your mind and your soul. They may even freshen your appearance, your color, and act as a restorative to your whole countenance. Refresh.