When was the last time you did a check on the level of your cup? Was it full, or close to empty? Do you see your cup half full, or half empty (we’ve all heard that saying…) Are you constantly pouring into other people and helping others, being a disciple of the word and having a pure heart? That’s awesome and I’m so proud of you for taking your time out to serve others. Isn’t it amazing how rewarding it is to serve others? As you continue to grow, do you know where your cup is? Is it overflowing, or is it almost empty? Is your cup completely empty? If I can be honest with you, my cup is not always as full as it should be.
Over the last 5 years I have been faithful to God’s word and direction in my personal life, volunteer activities, my work environment and in my church life. I have given 110% of my time and energy into specific activities which require me to give of myself, my time, my attention, my finances and true dedication and commitment. This means I am pouring from my cup. I must admit, being able to self-reflect and recognize when your spiritual cup is low, when you are tired, or when you need a break, are healthy spiritual checks. Regular checks like these are vital, but I promise, I definitely did not get this right the first 100, or 100,000 times. To this day, I still get it wrong.
“You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water.” Psalm 63:1 NIV
Learning how to do this took a lot of trials. I would exhaust myself until I was physically ill. Neglecting volunteer activities to put in more time at work, instead of using time management skills is a key indicator for me. Running low on energy for my church commitments and wanting to disregard them all together is another sign. Time management and recognizing burnout are two major components of having a lifestyle that is in balance. Do not follow my lead and wait until it’s too late to recognize this fact like I have in the past.
Let God Fill Your Empty Places
In my opinion, being filled means having a sense of joy and peace in our lives. Not the fake kind of happiness that overflows from a cup of glitter and makes people want to cringe. But a genuine sincerity that says, I have Christ and through Him all things are possible. Sharing in the love between God the Father, Jesus Christ the Son and the Holy Spirit. Love that is not contingent on additional factors. A love so simple, that we only have to say yes and His joy is instantly overflowing our cups.
What does it mean to be filled and how can we fill ourselves?
Having a full cup takes on the look of dedication. Knowing what it means to be outside of the will of God, yet wanting to play no part of it. Recognizing that outside of the love of Jesus Christ and God your cup cannot be filled.
“Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered.” Matthew 10:29-30 NIV
Knowing when your cup is running low, taking some time for yourself and allowing others to refill your cup. If your cup is empty, you have nothing to pour into others. We are not left to trip and fall to the ground, or to run around this world outside of the will of God.
Related Post: Fullness of joy
Having our cup full also takes on the form of hope. A type of hope that reminds us that God reigns and He will provide for all of our needs.
Maintaining Your Cup
Find your rhythm. Whether it’s morning quiet time and a devotional, journaling, reading a book, find a time that you dedicate to yourself and feeding your spiritual mind. Every morning before my feet hit the floor, I do my devotionals. I’ll be honest, if I know my morning will be a hectic one, I will do my devotional at night. But before I pull up a work app, a social media app, or text anyone I try to always get the Word as first fruits in my brain. Once you make this a habit, it will be routine and before you know it, it’s in your daily rhythm.
Take your time. Most of us don’t normally ask for a break from responsibilities, or verbally tell people we need time for ourselves, but we should. Learn to respectfully say no and take time out for you. Each of us are worth of taking a breather, no matter how long we have been operating at full throttle. No one has the right to judge when we need a break. Set realistic expectations for yourself. Many times we are our worst critic.
Whatever you need to give to others, you must first give to yourself.
What are you not giving to yourself that you could spend 15 minutes a day doing? Start small, do not overwhelm yourself. Ask yourself and perhaps an accountability partner, what you can do to ensure your cup remains full so you can pour into others.