Tell Me the Condition of Your Soul

“When was the last time someone asked you about the condition of your soul?”

When I posed this question to our Commissioning group last week, we had a few minutes of silence.

“Has there ever been a time when someone has asked about your soul?”

{Crickets}

It’s not a typical question, but it’s an important one. Perhaps the fact that we rarely, if ever, ask about a person’s soul betrays our lack of concern for something about which Jesus is intensely passionate.

What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul?  (Matthew 16:26, NIV)

Jesus cares very much about our souls, and he challenges us to make our souls a priority.

The first step in the right direction is to begin looking beneath the surface.

The usual questions about my life involved how things are going at work, life with family, or what I’ve “been up to” lately. There really isn’t anything wrong about these conversation pieces, but we often settle for the surface level. Actually, each of those questions can be taken into the soul level if we are willing to take the risk and make the time.

Here are a couple of examples of going deeper:

Surface-level: “How are things going at work?”

Soul-level: “How have things at work encouraged or discouraged you spiritually?

Surface-level: “How is life with the family?”

Soul-level: “In what ways has family life been growing you as a person lately?”

Surface-level: “What have you been up to lately?”

Soul-level: “What activities have been energizing you and which ones leave you depleted?”

In each of our surface-level questions, we can also get a short response — “Good, fine, nothing much.” It often makes me wonder if by asking those “closed” questions if I really even care about the answers. On the other hand, asking the soul-level questions invites the other person to share their story, their heart, and their soul.

As followers of Jesus, we ought to raise awareness, develop compassion, and begin taking care of souls. It starts with asking better questions and making time to hear the responses.

May we be known as Jesus is known – as a lover of souls.

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