Soul Survivor – Soul Provider!
This week I spent two nights camping in Staffordshire Show ground at an event called ‘Soul Survivor’. Over the summer Soul Survivor run holiday camps across the country and welcome over 5,000 young people to each event.
This was the first time our youth had ever been to Soul, five days of camping in glorious sunshine, with the freedom to roam about safely, activities such as: silent disco, bonfire, water fight, fun run, film evenings, worship events, talks in the big top. It really was an experience I don’t think any of them will forget.
2019 will be the last ever Soul Survivor so we are encouraging all our teenagers to bring a friend next year 3rd – 7th August 2019.
Contemplating the title of the camp ‘Soul Survivor ‘ got me thinking about our souls or inner life. Whilst our soul is invisible to the outside world, it is nonetheless very real and of utmost importance. It is a living thing that needs nurturing, care and attention.
I wonder do we pay as much attention to our soul, to ensuring that our inner life is cared for as much as our outward appearance.
Christian writer John Ortberg, in his book ‘Soul Keeping: Caring for the most important part of you’ writes “For the soul to be well, it needs to be with God.” These words are echoed in Psalm 62:1 as the psalmist says “Truly my soul finds rest in God; my salvation comes from him.”
Whilst I, who by the way is not a fan of camping, may have survived my first Soul Survivor experience, actually the real test of soul survivor is whether I and the young people choose to find rest in God or instead choose to ignore him. Being a follower of Jesus is all about relationships not religion. Jesus ensured that I have all I will ever need when he died on the cross; he took upon himself all my sins, feelings of guilt and shame so that I can be free. Living a life knowing that you are loved unconditionally and loved exactly just the way you are is amazing. Giving your life to Jesus is the best thing you can do to experience rest in your soul.
And so I end today’s contemplation referring to the lyrics of one of my favourite 1980s singer Michael Bolton, who had a hit with the song ‘Soul Provider’ (please allow me a little poetic license here). Perhaps mull over these words today and know that your Soul Provider is waiting for you to respond to Him.
“You don’t understand, no
The full intent of my plan
I want to be your soul provider
I want to stay that way
For the longest time
I want to be, your soul provider
Just say you’ll let me
And I will”