For many people, summer brings with it cookouts, pool parties, Texas Rangers baseball games, and summer road trips! If you choose to embark on a summer road trip, you’ll likely be keeping an eye on your car’s gauges (e.g., speedometer, fuel gauge, temperature gauge, oil pressure, etc.). You’ll keep a constant eye on these gauges to make sure the needles are where they need to be.
Bill Hybels suggests that we also have three internal gauges we need to monitor constantly. Our “spiritual gauge” measures feelings of connectedness to Christ. Our “physical gauge” has to do with our physical well-being and fitness. Finally, our “emotional gauge” is fueled by activities that bring us delight, and leave us feeling inspired and fulfilled. Just like with our cars, problems can arise when even one of our gauges is depleted.
If you’ve neglected any of these gauges lately, the summer is the perfect time for a personal tune up. All summer long, we’ll be sharing a resource each week to help you reset spiritually, physically, or emotionally as part of our Summer Tune Up blog series.
June 19: Spiritual Gauge – Extended Time With the Lord
We live in a world where our gadgets are constantly beeping, ringing, or buzzing for our attention. It can seem difficult to spend just a few minutes alone with God, much less an extended period. However, the practice of engaging in an extended time with the Lord is important to keeping our spiritual gauge full.
This summer, we would encourage you to set aside an extended length of time to devote yourself to prayer. Consider scheduling a personal day from work or blocking off part of a weekend.
This guide will give you practical tips to help you focus and structure your time, as well as scripture to get you started.
If you’ve been around Watermark for any length of time, you’ve probably figured out that we really like to have fun with one another. Continuing with our Summer Tune Up Blog Series, we’ll be sharing ideas for filling your emotional gauge by having fun with the people God has put in your life – including those in your community group.
First check out the message, “The Serious Business of Having a Good Time” to learn why it’s important to incorporate fun into the culture of your community group. Then check out the blog post, “13 Fun Activities for Community Groups” for some ideas. Initiate a plan with your community group this week!
We provide a variety of resources to help you get more equipped and fill up your spiritual gauge. One of those resources is our monthly equipping webinar – which allows you to interact and learn from our team about a variety of topics.
This week we encourage you to listen to our very first equipping webinar, “Principles for Growth” which unpacks why equipping is important to the Christian life and gives practical tips for how to take the next step toward deeper intimacy with Christ. As you listen, take time to write down the principles discussed as well some specific ways you can apply those principles to your life.
The summer is a great opportunity to fill your emotional gauge by reading. Looking for a book suggestion? We’ve put together a list of our staff’s book recommendations in this blog post. We encourage you to pick just one book off this list and start reading it this week, or even invite your community group to read and discuss a book together.
This week, we’re talking about the importance of keeping an eye on your physical gauge. Below you'll find a blog post to help you think about your physical wellness in relation to God’s Word, as well as four simple ways to turn your wellness into an act of worship. This post was written by Bobby Rodriquez, who leads our ministry to fourth and fifth graders and is passionate about stewarding our physical body toward the glory of God.
"Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body." 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
Have you ever considered that your body does not belong to you? Unlike some of the other things we think are “ours” (our children, homes, salaries, gifts, talents, etc.), the body is the only “thing” that is always with us, yet it still doesn’t belong to us. Our body is a gift from God, meant to be used for His glory and honor. That means that what we put into our bodies and how we use them is not about wellness; it’s about worship.
So how do we do that? Here are four simple ways to turn your wellness routine into an act of worship.
- Reset the purpose of fitness. It’s easy to think of exercise as a necessity, but exercise is about stewardship. Consider how masterfully God designed the human body. He designed the body as an incredible machine – able to heal itself and respond to burdens by becoming stronger – and He entrusted this body to you. When you look at your body as a gift that you’ve been entrusted by the Creator, it changes your attitude toward the purpose of physical fitness.
- Redeem the pre-meal prayer. Sometimes a pre-meal blessing can feel like a formality. When was the last time you surrendered every plate of food to the wisdom and will of God (James 1:5)? Consider making your pre-meal prayer a genuine request for wisdom to make wise food and portion choices.
- Use exercise as an opportunity for connect with Jesus. Your fitness activities can also serve as an opportunity to connect with Jesus. Look for ways to meditate on or memorize scripture throughout your workout. Certain activities (like running or walking) can also serve as opportunities for an extended time in prayer.
- Go play! Exercise shouldn’t be boring. When it comes to fitness, find what’s enjoyable to you: ride a bike, play tennis, run, walk, or lift weights. God loves when His children discover and deploy their passions. Find an exercise you find delight in and let it stir your affections for the Lord.
Try incorporating these four ideas into your wellness routine this week. Above all, pray that God would make you diligent to steward your body as an act of honor and worship to Him!
One of the best ways to fill up your emotional gauge is to serve in your area of giftedness. This week we’re sharing resources to help you identify your specific gift set and opportunities to deploy those gifts in service to others!
- Find Your Mission - This class will help you use identify and use your SHAPE (spiritual gifts, heart, abilities, passions, and experience). Click here to listen to the Find Your Mission class.
- Determine Your Spiritual Gifts - Click here to download a copy of our Spiritual Gifts Assessment. This assessment will ask you to answer a series of questions. Once you’ve finished answering the questions, click the second tab of the document (labeled ‘results' and located in the lower left hand corner) to discover your spiritual gifts.
- Make an eternal impact! - After learning more about your specific spiritual gifts, click here to view opportunities where you can put your gifts into action as part of Give & Go Summer 2017.
God tells us that scripture teaches us what is true, helps us understand areas that aren’t as they should be in our lives, corrects us when we are wrong, and teaches us to do what is right (2 Timothy 3:16.) It’s important that believers regularly practice the spiritual discipline of scripture memory. In this week’s Summer Tune-Up we are challenging you to memorize an entire Psalm (yes, you can do it!) If you already memorized Psalm 1 part of the Six Week Challenge try to use the same techniques to memorize Psalm 27.