Discovering My Soul’s God-Design…

     I write and speak often about the soul. Throughout the many years of my journey, I’ve developed a holistic view of the soul.

     To me, the soul is the entirety of a person. Housed in our physical bodies, the soul includes a full range of emotions, relationships, thoughts, disciplines and decisions. The very heartbeat of a soul is the spirit. What’s in the spirit flows outward, impacting every part of a person.

     I believe individual souls are designed by God to do God’s good work!

     When the Spirit of Christ is invited into the human spirit, more Christ-like characteristics begin to develop. The more like Jesus we are, the more we’re living according to our God design.

     The rate at which we grow seems to be commensurate to our willingness to say, “yes” to the prompting of God’s Spirit. As we cooperate with changes God desires, more and more of Jesus’ nature begins to impact every nook and cranny of our beings.

     Since retiring from a longtime government career a few years ago, I have spent much time, poured a lot of energy and invested significant resources into learning as much as possible about the matter of caring for one’s soul.

     Soul care is not only important for an individual and those with whom they interact, but I’m convinced, the way we tend our souls matters deeply to God.

     Working with both a Jesus-loving life coach and wise, knowledgeable spiritual directors has helped me immensely in this process. Because of these interactions I felt led to become certified as a life coach and recently, to begin a certification program which will lead to becoming a spiritual director.

     Much of my learning is reflected in blogs posted Mondays and Thursdays of each week.

     Thank you for reading them, for your partnership in my journey, and blessings to each God-designed friend reading this post…

Sue Reeve

Finding a Sacred Space…

Botanic Gardens, San Diego, CA

     A few weeks ago, I realized I needed to do some serious work in my home office. It’s my favorite room in our house, but I’d allowed it to become chaotic. The little oak prayer desk Ron built for me years ago was laden with unopened mail, unfiled documents, unfinished projects and too many books. The desk’s lovely granite top wasn’t even visible.

     So, the project began. Ron painted. My daughter, Angie, who’s got a great eye for interior decorating, helped with design decisions. I purged, consolidated files, reorganized and de-cluttered the prayer desk.

     During this time, while going through a file, I ran across a poem I’d written seventeen years ago during a season when my overwhelmed and probably overworked soul longed for greater spiritual intimacy. The poem was entitled “My Secret Place.”

     As I read and re-read the words of this prayer, I recognized a similar longing and realized the office renovation project was related. My soul was longing for a sacred space. I sat down at my computer and revised the words “secret place” to “sacred space.”

     While in the process of this project, I had a coaching conversation with a young woman who was wrestling with the best way to develop a closer relationship with God. I mentioned the idea of creating a dedicated “sacred space.” That same day my young friend sent an email and photo that warmed my heart. She’s given me permission to share her words and photo with you.

“I just felt I wanted to show you what the Lord put on my heart to create after our chat. I moved a little couch around in my room to create a “nook” (see picture below) with a nice window and candle and guitar nearby for spiritual songs, etc.)”

     In a subsequent conversation this special young woman said she’d spent time in her ‘sacred space’ every day, and “It’s been wonderful!”

     I too have once again found solace in my ‘sacred space.’

     Here’s the poem prayer I wrote in 2002 and revised in 2019. I hope some who are reading these words today will find it meaningful. Also, I’d love to hear about your ‘sacred space.’

My Sacred Space

Lord, help me find a sacred space.[1]
A shelter from life’s hectic race;
A place where I’ll find strength in you,
Where faith and hope will be renewed.

Lord, meet me in that sacred space;
Reveal a glimpse of Jesus’ face.
In stillness teach me how to walk,
Which paths to take, how best to talk.

Then, when I leave that place, I pray
You’ll guard my mind throughout the day.
Help me take captive every thought, [2]
To think what’s pure and shun what’s not.

To meditate on truth and light[3]
waking hours and silent nights.
In secret thoughts love, trust, obey;
Desiring Your will and way.

Make me a child you can bless,
An image of Christ’s graciousness.
Through spirit eyes, Lord, help me see
My life with You eternally.

©Sue Reeve 2002; Revised 2019

May your soul be replenished and refreshed in your ‘sacred space’…

Sue Reeve

  1. “…when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.” Matthew 6:6 NKJV
  2. “…we take every thought captive to make it obedient to Christ.” 2 Corinthians 10:5 NIV
  3. “…Fix your thoughts on what is true and honorable and right. Think about things that are pure and lovely and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.”Philippians 4:8 NLT

Remaining Hopeful When Life Feels Dark…

Photo from near the High Point summit of Palomar Mountain Range, San Diego County.

     The young professional woman’s disappointment was palpable.

          She’d just received the call.

               This wasn’t the first time her ‘dream job’ had slipped away.

                    Would she ever be the one selected?

     The worried wife’s shoulders drooped.

          The doctor’s words weren’t what she wanted to hear.

               Her husband’s diagnosis was dire.

                    Will we be able to make it through this?

     Fear walked alongside as she entered her child’s classroom.

          The teacher’s report wasn’t good.

               Her boy’s behavior was disruptive; he was failing most subjects.

                    How could she help this son she loved so dearly succeed?

     The possible scenarios are endless.

     Perhaps you’re trying to find your way through the darkness even now.

     No doubt about it. Life can be difficult. Some situations are dark and seem hopeless. Finding a way through is scary. It may even feel impossible.

     My life journey has included several ‘dark days.’ Some I’ve walked through with grace and dignity. Many, I haven’t!

     While not my favorite teachers, disappointment, discouragement and despair can be great instructors. Here are a few lessons they’ve taught me:

  • Often, my most valuable life learning has happened as a result of suffering. As I’ve trudged through a difficult season, along the way I’ve discovered strength that seemed impossible, resources I’d never imagined existed. I’ve developed self-awareness that has enabled me to grasp what does and does not work well for my God-design.
  • I’ve learned much about my own life by listening to or reading the stories of older or more spiritually mature people who have ‘been there, done that’ and are willing to share what helped them. Other’s transparency, authentic counsel and encouragement have more than once helped me make sense of my unique journey and point me in a new, more positive direction.
  • I have power to make personal choices. Most importantly, I can choose how I will respond. Will I choose bitter, or will I choose to learn and grow, accept and forgive? The freedom to choose is a great gift God gives.
  • Dark days are real. Unknown outcomes are scary. Weeping will occur. Despite the darkness, however, I’ve learned God is good—always good. At the core of who I am, I believe God knows me better than I know myself and desires the best for me and those I love.
  • It’s all right to weep and feel angry at times. But, it’s also important to act. I’ll be most successful when I keep placing one foot of faith in front of the other, cry out for God’s wisdom along the way and determine to seek increased knowledge.
  • As I cooperate and allow God’s will to supersede my idea of what is best, hope arises. Dawn of a new day breaks. As the psalmist said so eloquently, “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning.” (Psalms 30:5)

Blessings as you hold on to HOPE despite the darkness of your circumstances…

Sue Reeve