1) Cleanse Your Heart – Get Spiritually Healthy
The Bible encourages us to draw close to God and allow our hearts and bodies to be cleansed. This is the first step in our spring cleaning project. We can’t clean ourselves. Instead, we must draw near to God and ask Him to do the cleansing.
Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. (KJV)
Let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. (NIV)
2) Clean Out Your Mouth – Deep Clean Inside and Out
Spiritual cleansing requires deep cleaning — it is housekeeping that goes beyond what others see and hear. It’s a cleansing from within — inside and out. As your heart gets clean, your language should follow. This is not just talking about bad language, but also negative talk and pessimistic thoughts that contradict the Word of God and faith. This includes the challenge to stop complaining.
The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks. (NIV)
Do everything without complaining or arguing… (NIV)
3) Renew Your Mind – Take Out the Garbage
This is one of the biggest areas of struggle for most of us — removing the garbage from our minds. Garbage in equals garbage out. We must feed our minds and spirits the Word of God instead of the garbage of this world.
Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. (NIV)
2 Corinthians 10:5
We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. (NIV)
4) Repent from Hidden Sin – Clean Out Your Spiritual Closets
Hidden sin will destroy your life, your peace, and even your health. The Bible says to confess your sin – tell someone, and reach out for help. When your spiritual closets are clean, the heaviness from hidden sin will lift.
When I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night your hand was heavy upon me; my strength was sapped as in the heat of summer. Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity. I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the LORD”—and you forgave the guilt of my sin. (NIV)
5) Release Unforgiveness and Bitterness – Get Rid of Old Baggage
Any sin will weigh you down, but long kept unforgiveness and bitterness is like old baggage in the attic you just can’t seem to part with. You are so familiar with it, you don’t even realize how it is hindering your life.
Therefore … let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily hinders our progress… (NLT)
Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. (NIV)
6) Involve Jesus in Your Daily Life – Let the Son Shine In
What God wants most from you is relationship – friendship.. He wants to be involved in the big and small moments of your life. Open your life, let the light of God’s presence shine into every part, and you’ll have no need for a yearly spiritual cleaning. Instead experience daily, moment to moment refreshing of your spirit.
1 Corinthians 1:9
God … is the one who invited you into this wonderful friendship with his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. (NLT)
For you have rescued me from death; you have kept my feet from slipping. So now I can walk in your presence, O God, in your life-giving light. (NLT)
7) Learn to Laugh at Yourself and at Life
Some of us take life too seriously, or we take ourselves too seriously. Jesus wants you to enjoy yourself, and learn to have some fun. God made you for His pleasure!
The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song. (NIV)
Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy. Then it was said among the nations, “The LORD has done great things for them.” (NIV)
Is compassion important? You bet it is. Without compassion, this story may just as well be true:
A man fell into a pit and couldn’t get himself out.
A SUBJECTIVE person came along and said: “I FEEL for you, down there.”
An OBJECTIVE person came along and said: “It’s logical that someone would fall, down there.”
A CHRISTIAN SCIENTIST came along: “You only THINK that you are in a pit.”
A PHARISEE said: “Only BAD people fall into a pit.”
A MATHEMATICIAN calculated HOW he fell into the pit.
A NEWS REPORTER wanted the exclusive story on his pit.
A FUNDAMENTALIST said: “You DESERVE your pit.”
CONFUCIUS said; “If you would have listened to me, you would not be in that pit.”
THE NEW AGER said: “Your pit is only a state of mind.”
A REALIST said: “That’s a PIT.”
A SCIENTIST calculated the pressure necessary (lbs./sq.in.) to get him out of the pit.
A GEOLOGIST told him to appreciate the rock strata in the pit.
AN EVOLUTIONIST said: “You are a rejected mutant destined to be removed from the evolutionary cycle.” In other words, he is going to DIE in the pit, so that he cannot produce any “pit-falling offspring.”
The CITY INSPECTOR asked if he had a permit to dig a pit.
A PROFESSOR gave him a lecture on: “The Elementary Principles of the Pit.”
An EVASIVE person came along and avoided the subject of his pit altogether
A SELF-PITYING person said: “You haven’t seen anything until you’ve seen MY PIT!!”
A CHARISMATIC said: “Just CONFESS that you’re not in a pit.”
An OPTIMIST said: “Things COULD be worse. Good thing it’s just a pit.”
A PESSIMIST said: “Things WILL get worse! And it starts with a pit!”
JESUS, seeing the man, took him by the hand and LIFTED HIM OUT of the pit.
So is compassion important?
Of course it is.
But the world continues to become hardened maybe because we are always on a rush to do things. Maybe because we have been victimized by swindlers and racketeers who prey on our compassion?
The Merriam Webster Dictionary defines compassion as: “sympathetic consciousness of others’ distress together with a desire to alleviate it.”
It’s not just saying, “I am sorry.” It’s saying, “I’m sorry and I will help.”
Great leaders show compassion. And out country is in great need of leaders who are. In his book, Living Faithfully, J. Allen Blair tells of a man who was struggling to get to Grand Central Station in New York City. The wind blew fiercely, and the rain beat down on him as he lugged his two heavy suitcases toward the terminal. Occasionally he would pause to rest and regain his strength before trudging on against the elements. At one point he was almost ready to collapse, when a man suddenly appeared by his side, took the suitcases, and said in a strangely familiar voice, “We’re going the same way. You look as if you could use some help.” When they had reached the shelter of the station, the weary traveler, the renowned educator Booker T. Washington, asked the man, “Please, sir, what is your name?” The man replied, “The name, my friend, is Roosevelt. Teddy Roosevelt.” No wonder they are great leaders.
Here is a key thought we all should remember: People lose their compassion when they begin to think that they have been put on this earth to see through one another. But people of noble character know that they have been put on this earth to see one another through.
Original post can be found here
When it comes to enjoying life and not taking myself too seriously, my best teachers are my dogs. I find I’m much happier when I employ their way of doing things. Here are some tips I found that help me to lead a more spiritual and happy life – all given to us by dogs!
* Never pass up the opportunity to go for a joy ride.
* Allow the experience of fresh air and the wind in your face to be pure ecstasy.
* When loved ones come home, always run to greet them.
* When it’s in your best interest, practice obedience.
* Let others know when they’ve invaded your territory.
* Take naps and stretch before rising.
* Run, romp and play daily.
* Eat with gusto and enthusiasm.
* Be loyal.
* Never pretend to be something you’re not.
* If what you want lies buried, dig until you find it.
* When someone is having a bad day, be silent, sit close by and nuzzle them gently.
* Thrive on attention and let people touch you.
* Avoid biting when a simple growl will do.
* On hot days, drink lots of water and lie under a shady tree.
* When you’re happy, dance around and wag your entire body.
* No matter how often you’re scolded, don’t buy into the guilt thing and pout .. run right back and make friends.
* Delight in the simple joys of a long walk.