This week I am at the Florida Christian Writers conference in Leesburg, Florida. It is a joy to be here with others who have a passion for writing and for drawing near to the Lord.
One of my duties here is to lead the morning devotion time. At the early hour of 7:00am today we sang some songs and then focused on the word “refresh.”
The dictionary defines “refresh” this way:
to restore strength and animation to, REVIVE, RENOVATE, to restore or maintain by renewing supply: REPLENISH, AROUSE, STIMULATE.
My prayer has been that taking time away from my daily routine to come to this conference will refresh my desire to write and my passion to be all God wants me to be. I sense that happening.
As I meditated on the word “refresh,” today I realized I can’t refresh myself. Refreshing comes from two places—God and others.
In Psalm 23 it says:
He makes me lie down in [fresh, tender] green pastures; He leads me beside the still and restful waters. He refreshes and restores my life (my self)…verses 2-3 AMP
This reveals I can be refreshed as I spend time with the Lord.
Another way to be refreshed is to reach out to others. When I do, this is what the Word promises will happen:
…he who refreshes others will himself be refreshed. Proverbs 11:25 NIV
How I love that verse. Another translation says, “He who waters will himself be watered.”
I have seen this happen over and over again. As I reach out to encourage someone, encouragement comes back to me—either from them or from another individual. Whether you call it “what goes around come around” or “reaping what you sow,” it happens.
After passing along what God was showing me about the word “refresh” this morning, I opened up our prayer time. Then we were silent for a little while. During those quiet moments a picture of what being refreshed was like came to my mind.
I saw a bouquet of fresh flowers. They were fragrant and the colors were beautiful. Then after awhile they didn’t smell so good and the petals and leaves were falling off and wilting.
Suddenly the bouquet was fresh again—fragrant, colorful, beautiful. That’s what happens when our souls are refreshed. It seems as miraculous as a bouquet of flowers being restored. That’s what God wants to do for us on a regular basis. I thank Him for the scores of times He has refreshed my soul.
I thank Him for the refreshing I’ve received here at this conference as I spend time with Him and as I have sought to refresh others.
What about you? Do you need to have your soul refreshed? Have you spent time with God and in the pursuit of reaching out to refresh others? God promises you will be refreshed.