Summary: The importance and blessings of spiritual inventory.
Inventory is of a great value in all aspects of life. Its importance must not be disregarded but must be well-appreciated. Every year end, inventory is a part of every organization, big and small, non-profit and profit-oriented entities. Inventory is a way of knowing what happened, what is happening, and most all, what to look forward in the future. The same is true with every individual - self-evaluation is greatly needed for improvement of one’s self: A person who does not practice self-evaluation has the possibility to be deceived and to be destroyed. Without self-searching, we could not see ourselves in reality.
Christians should be aware of the value and blessings of self-evaluation. We are in a busy world and there is always the danger of overlooking the questionable areas of our life. We could be too critical to others, but remain neglectful when it comes to our dirty spots of life. We need the help of God in order to have a well-evaluated life.
In Psalm 139:23-24, David said, “Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: and see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” Honest spiritual inventory is attained through humility on the part of a believer and through the working of the Lord.
Spiritual inventory helps us to see who we really are according to God’s view point. Consistent inventory from time to time shapes and leads us to spiritual consistency. As we consider our spiritual needs, we could also sort out things that are worthless. The worthless and none essential things in our lives must be put away and the needful things must be desired and embraced for our spiritual edification. Spiritual cleansing is an excellent outcome of spiritual inventory.
The parable of the lost son is a very simple story, yet it has a weighty spiritual lesson not to be avoided, but to be put into practice. Demonstrating these Biblical principles in our lives surely glorify our Heavenly Father.
(I) We Must Consider Ourselves
The prodigal son had a different outlook of life and an indifferent attitude toward his father, until he came to himself. He was not aware of his unwise money management which led him to deep poverty. He could not resist the enticement of the devil. His foolishness and evil desires led him to spiritual poverty. Truly, we must consider our ways.
(II) We Must Know Our Gains And Loses
-Material and spiritual gain
-Material and spiritual loses
One good reason why we need to have spiritual inventory is to know and evaluate our spiritual performance. Through this process, we could see our spiritual condition. In many cases, material loss is an unpleasant consequence of unmonitored spiritual life. God permits this to happen in order to catch our attention that we may take heed to His message and keep right with Him. It also reminds us to put our trust in the Lord and not in our own way of understanding. The prodigal son realized his loses when he came to himself.
(III) We Must Know How To Resolve
Luke 15: 18-20
-With repentant heart
-With spiritual intelligence
In the process of self-inventory, as we see our failures and blunders of life, our crucial decision plays an important role in restoring things and attaining good success in the future. Spiritual determination is an advantage to reach success. Humility is a God-given principle to enjoy God’s grace. Repentant heart touches God’s heart of compassion. Spiritual intelligence is a gift from God, and freely given to those who have a contrite heart. Eventually, it leads them to walk in the path of wisdom.
(IV) We Must Rejoice In Our Success
In every failure there is lesson to be learned. The lost son learned many lessons through his unpleasant experiences, but through spiritual inventory, he saw what is essential for his spiritual restoration.
In every success we must know how to rejoice in the Lord.
In Luke 15:32 it is written, It was meet that we should make merry, and be glad: for this thy brother was dead, and is alive again; and was lost, and is found.
New Year is coming! May we realize the importance of spiritual inventory and take time to evaluate ourselves through the help of God. Spirit-guided inventory is the key to a better spiritual life. May the grace of God be manifested as we deepen our desire to have a well-evaluated life. May the Lord Jesus Christ be glorified in every thing we do and in every success we attain.