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Soul Care Plan Introduction: The Soul Care Plan is a way to make space for God. The best way to start is to acknowledge God’s presence in your normal and mundane activities. The Soul Care Plan is only a tool, so if it (or this set of instructions) is getting in the way, simplify it or change it. If possible, have a spiritual mentor or trusted friend walk with you through the 4 categories. Ideally, you should talk and someone else should take notes. This process works best in conversation, because someone else will likely make connections that you might not be aware of. Mentors: the best question you can ask is, “What else?” Use this time for discovery. Journey together instead of rushing through. Step 1: Brainstorm all of the activities that fit each category- resist the temptation to leave out unrealistic activities. Don’t be afraid to write down your dreams! Give yourself time to list life-giving activities and experiences. a. Physical: List out activities that bring a sense of renewal. For some, this might include exercise (walking, running, biking, swimming, tennis, etc). This will also include visiting spaces that refresh you (cathedrals, art museums, lakefront, woods). Other ideas include massage therapy, gardening, pedicures/manicures, or dancing. b. Emotional/Mental: List mental and emotional outlets for finding refreshment and replenishment. These are ways of “going off duty” without being a passive observer. List activities that will engage your creativity or mind in a way that leaves you energized. Some examples: creating and/or appreciating art, playing and/or enjoying music, photography, enjoying nature, cross-word puzzles, or reading your favorite book or a book about something new. If you want to start a new hobby, write it down (as long as it won’t create guilt or frustration).

c. Relational: List relationships that nurture your soul. Include mentors, encouraging friends, and trusted family members. You don’t have to meet with everyone regularly – some mentors or friends can only connect with you every few months. List them anyway. Write down people who have something to give to you, not people who drain you. This is the time to think about those who help feed and renew you, so that you can later give to others.

Midday Connection 820 N. LaSalle Chicago, IL 60610 www.middayconnection.org


d. Spiritual: Look at how you connect with God and your walk with Him and your closeness to Christ. How do you connect with the Lord? What is your style of worship? How is God challenging you to draw closer to Him? Some examples: More time spent studying the Bible, practice of fasting or solitude, worship, confession, etc. Look at where you need to grow and how you grow. Step 2: Create a Weekly Rhythm: This is a realistic 7 day rhythm that integrates these 4 elements in your daily life. You’ll find that the connections between the 4 aspects of soul care are very important. Here are some examples (these are only ideas, feel the freedom to create your own): e. Running, prayer, and worship music 2 times per week. f. Fasting with 2 other friends on Monday g. Start a book club with some good friends, using good fiction- Friday nights. h. Pray through the Psalms while watching the sunrise/sunset – 2-3 times per week, especially Saturday morning. i. Journal your study/observations of the Biblical text you’re meditating on – once per week j. Spend Saturday as a dedicated Sabbath full of rest and replenishment with fun activities k. Use a commentary or Bible study tool in your Scripture study – 2 times per week. l. Pray for your family and co-workers while driving or folding laundry – 2 times per week. m. Bike in a local park one Saturday per month. n. Fast from e-mail and technology every other Sunday. Try to plan some long-range events throughout the year. Some examples: a prayer retreat, an outdoor adventure, or weekend get-away with your friends or spouse. Keep in mind: If it’s not realistic and balanced, it won’t work. Step 3: Find a mentor and/or a spiritually encouraging friend to help hold you to it.

Remember: The Soul Care Plan is a way to make space for God. The best way to start is to acknowledge God’s presence in your normal and mundane activities. The Soul Care Plan is only a tool, so if it (or this set of instructions) is getting in the way, simplify it or change it.

“Come to Me all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” -Matthew 11:28-29 Midday Connection 820 N. LaSalle Chicago, IL 60610 www.middayconnection.org


SOUL CARE PLAN John 15:5 “I am the vine...apart from me you can do nothing.” The Soul Care Plan is a tool that helps us intentionally make space in our lives for God through experiences, practices and relationships that deepen our walk and further our growth. LIST ALL ACTIVITIES THAT FIT THESE CATEGORIES, NO MATTER HOW REALISTIC YOU THINK THEY ARE.

PHYSICALLY Protect time for physical activities that energize you and times of rest that refresh your soul.

EMOTIONALLY/MENTALLY Are you taking regular breaks from the mental and emotional drains?(Mt 14:23) What activities do you do for purely pleasure and renewal? (Hint: these will usually activate your creativity or mind in a way that leaves you refreshed)

RELATIONALLY- COMMUNITY Who are the people who build you up? Who nurtures your soul? Challenges you? Who cares for you during difficult times?

Midday Connection 820 N. LaSalle Chicago, IL 60610 www.middayconnection.org


SPIRITUAL What are you doing to grow spiritually in your walk with God? What has God been challenging you to change or start? (Fasting – Solitude – Service – Prayer – Scripture Meditation – Simplified Life – Worship – Confession – Etc.) In what ways do you need to become more Christ-like?

Create a weekly routine or rhythm that will help you practically integrate these four elements into your daily life: (Note: It is important to be realistic. It is okay to start small)

Pray and look for opportunities to engage the less-than-realistic activities. Seek going through this with a trusted friend or mentor for guidance and support.

Midday Connection 820 N. LaSalle Chicago, IL 60610 www.middayconnection.org

Soul Care Plan  

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