Phew! We made it. Summer is finally here, and we can take a moment to relax a little bit. It is usually this time of year that we get the church “blahs.” Our energy tanks are empty, and we often find ourselves looking for reasons to do something other than church while the weather is nice. That is not the only place that is running low. Our spiritual tanks might be in the red zone too! We have been running in high gear since at least October with no break. That has to have taken a spiritual toll on all of us as well.
I used to play saxophone in a band that traveled around the country. One of my stops was in the state of Nebraska. On the way there, we miscalculated the amount fuel we had in our tanks and ended up stranded fifteen miles from the nearest exit. This was Nebraska we are talking about, so traffic was not coming along very often. The drummer and I were volunteered to fetch enough fuel to get us to the exit. That is a thirty-mile round trip walk in the middle of the night… Truly a moment I will never forget.
Our spiritual tanks operate much the same way. We bounce along our everyday lives thinking we have enough God in our tanks but in truth, we are at least fifteen miles out and no traffic in site. What can we do to fix this before we find ourselves stranded? That is easy.
The simplest way is to come to church. Visit your spiritual family more often. Get into the ‘church habit.' This is a social way to share in God’s love. You get God’s Word, music and you also get to chit chat with people you have not seen all week.
Another way is to have small group Bible study. This is my favorite. Small groups are an awesome way to dig into God’s Word and also a fantastic way to bond with other people. You get a sense that there are people that are looking out for you and that God is working in your life directly and through these people. It helps you to stay accountable and hold others accountable to your Christian walk.
Finally, we have personal prayer time and Bible devotion. The Upper Room magazine is a wonderful way to start your spiritual devotion. It guides you on a daily walk with God so you can stay in touch with Him through prayer and internal reflection. All three of these ways can help fill up your spiritual tanks when you are empty.
Sometimes those tanks are empty, and you do not know it. Don’t get caught on the side of the road in the middle of nowhere… Make an effort to reconnect with God using one or more of the ways I outlined above. The rewards are worth the effort.