Rest and relaxation often come at a premium for women today. So when there’s an opportunity to sit back and enjoy the stillness, you want to make those moments count. What gives you the perfect blend of relaxation and refreshment? You’re probably thinking about reading a book, listening to music, or taking a power nap. But have you ever considered relaxation techniques that are less traditional? Maybe even a little over the top? Let’s dream for a while!
If a few chocolate bonbons are the remedy for your afternoon slump, you’d probably enjoy The Spa at the Hotel Hershey. There, you can relax with a chocolate fondue wrap, a chocolate immersion, or a whipped cocoa bath.
Or, for those of us who enjoy a little retail therapy, you can skip the jewelry counter and get diamonds infused right into your hair. Yes, a spa in London will make your hair sparkle like never before!
Then, there’s the ultimate bubble bath. At the Willow Stream Spa in Canada, you can soak in a wildflower-rose infused bath and experience three indoor waterfalls, all while taking in the view of panoramic mountain vistas.
It is fun to dream about luxurious spa treatments, isn’t it? Unfortunately, the dream doesn’t last long. How many times have you been relaxing with a good book and the phone rings? It’s your daughter and she needs to be picked up from soccer practice - and she has another practice tomorrow and two games on Saturday. Or, it’s your dad calling again. He’s asking for help moving a shelf, but you know he’s just lonely. You drive over to his house and visit for a few hours. You have responsibilities at work, at church, and with your family. Between the three, you never have a moment of peace!
Busy schedules and the demands of this world come at you until you burn out. The stress becomes too much to bear, but you have no way to release it. You feel tension in your relationships. You’re uncertain about the future. Negativity takes hold in your heart.
You may be dreaming of the day when you can escape it all and really relax. But, when that actually happens, what do you do? Yes, a day at the spa is relaxing - no distractions and no demands. But, the distractions, the demands, the stress, it’s all waiting for you when you get home. The kind of refreshment and renewal you receive at a spa, even the most luxurious spa on earth, is never enough. It’s skin deep. It’s temporary. And it misses the most crucial aspect of renewal - your heart.
The frantic schedules, the stress and pain of life, it all runs you ragged. But even worse, it consumes your heart and your mind. God is speaking to you, but the noise of the world is drowning him out. God wants you to be in his Word, but you never have time. God wants you to see the needs of your friends and neighbors, but you can’t see past your overscheduled calendar. He is calling you to a special, eternal kind of renewal and refreshment. Listen:
Be renewed in the spirit of your mind (Ephesians 4:23 KJV).
You won’t find God’s renewal, true and eternal refreshment, in the brochure of your local spa. You’ll find it on Calvary’s cross. God knows your sinful heart, but he also knows that you’re his daughter by faith. And so he sent your Savior, Jesus, to be your renewal. On the cross, Jesus willingly took all of your sins upon himself - all of your mistakes, all of the demands you can’t meet, everything that makes your heart heavy - and he defeated them. He rose from that tomb on Easter morning so that you, too, can rise from all of the pain, the failures, and the uncertainties of life. Sin cannot hold your heart down. It cannot take your mind captive. You’re a new person - renewed, restored, refreshed - in Jesus! (Read 2 Corinthians 5:17.)
When you’re looking for renewal, cry out to your heavenly Father - the One who has known you and loved you since before the beginning of time. (Read Psalm 51:10–12.) When you want to restore your faith and redirect your heart to your Savior, depend on the promise of the Holy Spirit. (Read Titus 3:5.) When you need refreshment, soak up Scripture and the forgiveness that God offers to you through his Word. (Read Lamentations 3:22–23.)
In the book of Esther, we read that it took 12 months of beauty treatments to get this would-be queen ready to meet her king. How glorious is it that we have a lifetime to renew, restore, and refresh our hearts before meeting our King! Take comfort - the power of Jesus’ forgiveness, grace, and mercy is transforming your heart every day. He will sustain you until your heart is fully and eternally restored as you enter the gates of heaven!
Editor’s note: This month’s devotion is slightly adapted from the Ministry Message that accompanies one of CTA’s new women’s ministry lines, Renew. Restore. Refresh. Check out the spa-themed retreat guides and gifts today!
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