What’s in your spiritual toolbox? We all have them – the go-to tried and true ways we come to God and those little someday I may try that ideas.
I like the concept of a toolbox. Now I do believe God is with us all the time and there is nothing we can really “do” to evoke his presence. He is the pursuer of our hearts and surrounds us and lives within no matter what we do.
Yet often we can’t hear him, experience him, find his comfort and wisdom. Like the out of control, full melt-down toddler sometimes we need something to cuddle with our worn out blankie or much loved, one-eyed stuffed animal or just spend time in loving arms, to calm our nerves and find the peace, healing and love we so desperately seek.
What do we turn to in those times? What do we rely on even in good times? Those are the tools in our spiritual toolbox.
Some basic tools we use all the time, like a hammer and screwdriver. The spiritual tools like prayer and Bible reading are essentials in everyone’s spiritual toolbox.
Other tools appeal more to some people that others. For me journaling, silence and annual (or more often) retreats. Others love memorizing Bible verses – and a new one each month. I find having one or two verses that linger with me on a yearly basis opens up my heart to hear God in new ways. I have a friend who loves taking walks in her woods and would consider that time with God indispensable. Another experiences God best when taking photos.
For some times a unique tool may come in handy. Maybe you have never tried before a silent retreat or a breath prayer or contemporary worship music. Occasionally picking up a new tool or one you haven’t tried before can bring in freshness to your spiritual walk. Or when experiencing a dry or difficult time, reading a new type of book, learning a fresh way to study the bible, talking with a spiritual director or even just a time of laughter and fellowship with friends – all help.
Sometime it is time to set aside a tool that has served us well in the past but now feels worn and old. As we grow and evolve in our walk with God we find what nourished us in one season isn’t as satisfactory in another time. Often God calls us to a new arena and we feel stretched, clumsy and uncomfortable learning a new skill.
Creating a spiritual toolbox is an ongoing practice.
I laughed with God this morning as I talked with him and imagine what tool he would hand me that day. I giggle as I asked him NOT to hit me any spiritual two by fours but if I needed a push or a gentle loving push – go ahead. He knows me and knows what I need to get going to do his work in his kingdom.
What is in your spiritual toolbox? What is your favorite tool?
Nancy Ruegg says
Such a fun and thought-provoking post, Jean! During the various seasons of my life, my toolbox has changed. For example, when my children were young, I often listened to Christian radio. The music and teachings ministered to my spirit. For many years I sang in choirs and ensembles. Rehearsals and worship opportunities alike brought me great joy. And during the years I commuted an hour each day to my job, I enjoyed the peace and quiet with Jesus as my passenger! But for decades now, my favorite tool has been Bible study. I love to learn about the history, the culture, the text meanings, and, of course, the ways God’s Word applies to me. And those times when God speaks directly to me, my spirit soars!
Jean Wise says
Amazing isn’t it Nancy how different tools mean more to us at different stages and ages. Love how the Bible study though has stayed with you. That is an essential one for sure.
Lisa notes... says
Love this, Jean! You make me realize that I actually have quite a full toolbox, praise God. That doesn’t mean I always use them! But they’re there. 🙂 Three of my favorites are worship music, centering prayer, and scripture memory.
Jean Wise says
Aren’t we blessed to have so many ways to connect with God. And too often we ignore those tools or only pick up one or two – imagine what we might experience digging in deeper into that tool box! Music is certainly a key tool too.
Hi Jean! I wrote an article once and wondered at all the tools God uses to get our attention. I don’t think I mentioned 2×4’s though! Everything in our day can be a tool to find Him.
i think my ‘tried and true’ tools are specific prayers that seem powerful to me, nature and listening for His voice. But as you say, these change sometimes because the tools wear out, or I do using them. It’s good for me to shake it up from time to time. Keeps me on my toes!
Jean Wise says
Look out Ceil for those spiritual 2x4s they can really whack you one. LOL. Have a great weekend Ceil. Thanks for commenting
Martha Orlando says
Great concept, Jean! Right now, I’m getting much out of journaling and simply conversing with God out on my deck. 🙂 Blessings!
Jean Wise says
Love a fellow journal! really more a prayer journal or recorded conversations with God aren’t they? Have a great weekend, Martha