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Life is filled with many burdens and responsibilities. Constantly we’re working, thinking, planning, and doing. And occasionally it’s good to enjoy a few soulful indulgences along the way.

Perhaps all too well we know the importance of work. We drive ourselves to accomplish many good things and we’re reluctant to take a day off.

But even more than intentional Sabbaths, many of us seem to struggle with enjoying the pleasures of life.

The very term guilty pleasures speaks to our ambivalence. Part of us wants to indulge, but we also feel guilty when we do. Surely there are better choices we can make.

For some this is a true guilt as they’re neglecting responsibilities or overindulging to the point of harm.

But for many others it’s a false guilt and struggle to freely bask in life’s many beauties.

For instance, on a hard day we might treat ourselves to our favorite snack or drink just because it makes us feel better.

We’re not trying to escape or merely numb ourselves to hard realities. But if we have to get up early, work late, or sit through another long meeting, we might as well enjoy an indulgent treat along the way. And enjoy it without guilt.

We might also choose to indulge in films, music, and other works of art just because they make us smile.

In the end, our indulgences don’t need further justification other than the fact they bring us joy. And as such they function as a type of soul food – nourishing our souls and giving us the inner strength to keep going.

Of course we remain ever mindful not to make an idol of even good things. But we’re free to enjoy the many delights of life as we accomplish all that God has called us to do.

Work hard and enjoy a few soulful indulgences as you go.

Photo by Louis Hansel @shotsoflouis on Unsplash

Dr. Corey Carlisle

Licensed marriage and family therapist and certified sex therapist - providing Christian counseling and soul care to individuals and couples, with a special emphasis on developing the masculine soul. Suwanee, GA 30024

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