Have you ever had a conversation with your soul? I not talking about positive thinking or affirming self-talk, but a literal and powerful interaction with your soul.
This morning my soul was stirred up with impatience, frustration and discontent. It felt like a rising force within me, like a pot bubbling over in a roiling boil, and I could neither turn it off nor ignore it. I tried to think about other things, to pray, to be thankful, to recite Scripture, all to no avail.
So, I asked a question inspired by Psalm 42:5, “Why are you so downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me?”
Dallas Willard describes the soul as the computer that controls our lives. The hardware and the software, the heart and the brain, of a life all wrapped up into a “soul.” Like my laptop that I take for granted until it crashes, my soul hums along without much notice until it becomes infected, corrupted, or otherwise compromised.
My morning soul chat revealed that I had been infected with viruses of selfishness, impatience, in short, sin. To the best of my knowledge, I had not invited the viruses; they barged in themselves.
Having identified the corruption in my soul, I found I was powerless to fix it with my own mental efforts. I needed more power, and thankfully I knew where to get it.
So, I said to my soul, in Jesus’ name, that impatience and discontent had no right to be there, that Jesus is Lord of my soul and that these feelings were not from him. Then I asked the Holy Spirit to replace my simmering self with Himself.
And He did. Just like that.
With my posture straightened and my attitude adjusted, I challenged my soul with a phrase that I learned from Deborah, a prophetess and judge in ancient Israel, “March on, my soul; be strong!” (Judges 5:21b)
And so, praise God, I march into my day knowing that it is well with my soul.
“Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.” Psalm 42:11
Note: Credit goes to Jennifer Rosthchild and her Bible study Me, Myself and Lies for pointing me to these ideas and references.