Spiritual Slumber

Journal Entry Date: October 11, 1996

“The family is on the road… family reunion time. It’s been a while since I wrote in my journal… I think mainly because I’ve been going thru a very dry time spiritually. Unfortunately, I handled it wrong. Instead of turning to God and working thru it, I just went to sleep spiritually.

Praise God for our pastor! Last weekend, he shared a message with the deacons from 1 Samuel chapters 16-24 on how to be a godly leader… and God really worked me over. It made me think of something that someone said (I don’t remember who)… something like, “God’s work will be done whether or not you do it. Don’t miss out on the blessing!

Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.

1 Peter 4:10-11

Author’s Note: Three months had passed since the previous journal entry. Busyness and just feeling overwhelmed shut me down spiritually. I didn’t realize it at the time, but my spiritual ‘tank’ was starting to run on fumes. Then the guilt of not keeping up with everything started piling on, making it even worse. I was trying to do everything in my own strength and in my own abilities instead of it being a natural outflow of abiding in Christ (which I didn’t really know how to do).

The next few months leading into Thanksgiving and Christmas would leave me starving spiritually… but I’m getting ahead of myself. You’ll see what I mean in the next post.

I was still learning how to recognize the ‘voice’ of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit convicts us of sin, and leads us to repentance. The voice of the enemy, however, is accusing and condemning… filling us with a sense of unhealthy guilt over our weaknesses and past failures. One brings life and restoration… the other brings darkness. At this point, I was becoming overcome by guilt of failing to ‘measure up’… which I know now wasn’t from God.

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death.

Romans 8:1-2

Be sure of which voice you are listening to! Lord, help us to truly discern Your ‘voice’… the voice of the One whose mercies are made new every morning! Thank You for Your mercy and Your great lovingkindness toward us! Amen.