Life is not just about us and we’re called to serve the needs of others as well. But while we’re willing to sacrifice ourselves for the good of others, we cannot lose ourselves in this process. We must stay connected to who God has called us to be and this requires us to regularly reconnect with our very selves.
Perhaps much of our life is lived on stage interacting and serving others in love in some way. And certainly there’s a joy here – seeing how God is using our strength to make a difference in the lives of others. But there’s also a danger. We risk disconnecting from our own hearts and losing our soul’s vitality when we’re constantly on stage meeting the needs of others.
We need regular times to retreat and be alone with ourselves before God. This might be some type of extensive Sabbatical or simply carving out a moment or two in our day when we don’t have to be “on” for others. Whatever it looks like, it’s a time of solitude to reflect and remember who God crafted us to be.
All too often we take on the roles and identities others give to us and we feel we’re supposed to be. And we do legitimately wear many hats throughout our life and relationships. But we each still have an essential being that’s all our own and not limited to our social roles and obligations. This is our unique heart, soul, and spirit.
And, to be sure, we can only love well when we stay in contact with this deepest part of who we are. We become the proverbial Tin Man when we lose contact with our inner self – going through the motions of life while remaining empty inside and prone to just giving up.
In the end, stay involved and be there to faithfully serve all those in your life. And don’t forget regular times for solitude to reconnect with your very soul. You grow in love by having these moments alone with God.