Wednesday, May 10, 2023

Spiritual Inventory Part 1

Spiritual Inventory Part 1

Principle 4: Openly examine and confess my faults to myself, to God, and to someone I trust.

Happy are the pure in heart.” (Matthew 5:8)

Step 4: We made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

Let us examine our ways and test them, and let us return to the Lord.” (Lamentations 3:40)


The first of the 4 lessons was the Moral Lesson. This is the theory, or the principles that are involved in doing an Inventory, such as making time, being open, relying on the Lord, and analyzing or thinking about your past and making a LIST".

The second of the 4 lessons was the Inventory Lesson. In this lesson we actually step through the Inventory form and actually begin to make a list. We cover the columns on the form with headings such as the person, the cause, the effect, the damage and my part.

The third and forth of the 4 lessons brainstorming sessions that provide lots of ideas for what kinds of things we might want to work on. Things such as relationships, priorities, our attitudes, integrity the first week, and our mind, our body, our family and our church the second week.

I love the verse in Matthew 5:8. The whole verse in the NirV is:

Blessed are those whose hearts are pure. They will see God.”

What does it mean to “see God”? The Greek word for “see” is “optomai”, which means “to gaze (that is, with wide open eyes, as at something remarkable”). There are other Greek words that define other ways to see something, as in to casually glance at something, or to have seen something in the past, but this word “optomai” means to gaze at something that we find remarkable and outstanding.

From the point of view of a practical application, this passage means that as we purify our hearts, we will see remarkable things about God that were previously hidden. It means that as we purify our hearts, we will receive understanding and revelation about God and will be able to function with the wisdom this understanding brings.

So what does it mean to have a “pure heart”? Purity is related to cleanliness.

Being dirty physically is a threat to our physical health and well being, as well as the health and well being of those around us. Dirty environments are breeding grounds for disease and poor health. In the physical realm we have organizations like the board of health that issues rules to keep us clean, and thereby healthy.

Being dirty spiritually is a threat to our spiritual health and well being as well as the health and well being of those around us. In the spiritual realm we have the Bible to provide rules to keep us clean and healthy, and Bible teachers to help us understand it.

From a spiritual point of view, impurity is like a fog that keeps us from seeing God and realizing His spiritual blessings in our life. Fog limits our ability to see, and prevents us from successfully navigating the spiritual landscape. As a result, we end up living in confusion about how all this works, and live lives of defeat.

We are going to examine four areas of spiritual purity tonight, then four more at our next session. Doing a Spiritual Inventory is a practical way to identify areas of impurity in our lives. The goal of this inventory is to clear the spiritual fog and bring clarity to God's spiritual principles.

1. Relationships with Others

In Matthew 6:12–14 (TLB) Jesus tells us to pray, “Forgive us our sins, just as we have forgiven those who have sinned against us. Don’t bring us into temptation, but deliver us from the Evil One.”

Asking God to forgive our sins on daily basis is one of the spiritual principles that will contribute to keeping the fog away. God keeps us clean when we ask Him to forgive our sins.

1Jn 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.

Just as asking forgiveness from God for our sin is a spiritual principle that leads to purification, and clear sightedness, our forgiveness of others is also a principle with spiritual ramifications. If we harbor resentment and unforgiveness towards fellow human beings, then the fog thickens and our relationship with Him grows dull. We can see this as we allow our mind to dwell on things done to us rather than forgiving people for things done to us thus freeing us to see clearly and receive God's blessings.

Listing your Spiritual Inventory will help to identify where we need to focus when working on this principle. Ask yourself the following questions regarding your relationships with others:

1. Who has hurt you?

2. Against whom have you been holding a grudge?

3. Against whom are you still seeking revenge?

4. Are you jealous of someone?

5. Have you tried to justify your bad attitude by saying it is “their fault”?

    The persons listed here go in column 1 of the Inventory Worksheet.

6. Who have you hurt?

    How did you hurt them? You may have hurt them unintentionally. Maybe it was intentional.

   The persons listed here go in column 5 of the Inventory Worksheet.

7. Who have you been critical of or gossiped about?

2. Priorities in Your Life

The next thing we can look at is what is important to us, what our priorities are.

Mat 6:33 (NIV) But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.

The “all these things” are listed in vs. 31.

Mat 6:31 So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?'

Jesus is calling us to “seek first His Kingdom”, which means to focus on Him. This means prayer, reading, studying, learning, fellowship, and faith. He is saying that if we focus on Him and these things, and if we believe that He cares about us, then we will be physically and spiritually blessed.

Some questions to help with the Spiritual Inventory.

1. After making the decision to turn your life and your will over to God, in what areas of your life are you still not putting God first?

2. What in your past is interfering with your doing God’s will?

Your ambition? Is it driven by serving God or is it driven by envy?

Your pleasures? If your pleasure has been found in the world,

Proverbs 21:17 warns, “He who loves pleasure will become poor.” Is your pleasure now found in Jesus Christ?

Psalm 16:11 (NCV) tells us, “You will teach me how to live a holy life. Being with you will fill me with joy; at your right hand I will find pleasure forever.”

3. What have been your priorities in your job? Friendships? Personal goals?

Were they just self-centered, self-serving? Selfishness turns life into a burden. Unselfishness turns burdens into life.

4. Who did your priorities affect?

You know, you will never get so rich that you can afford to lose a true friend.

5. What was good about your priorities?

6. What was wrong about them?

3. Your Attitude

The next area of our spiritual inventory is to examine our attitudes.

Ephesians 4:31 (GNB) says, “Get rid of all bitterness, passion, and anger. No more shouting or insults. No more hateful feelings of any sort.”

1. Do you always try to have an “attitude of gratitude” or do you find yourself always complaining about your circumstances?

2. In what areas of your life are you ungrateful?

3. Have you gotten angry and easily blown up at people?

4. Have you been sarcastic?

5. What in your past is still causing you fear or anxiety?

Our attitude will determine whether we wander in the wilderness or enter the promised land.

The report of the spies – Num 13:25-33

The rebellion of the people – Num 14:1-9

The judgment for Rebellion – Num 14:20-30

4. Your Integrity

The last area we are going to talk about tonight is your integrity.

Colossians 3:9 (NCV) tells us, “Do not lie to each other. You have left your old sinful life and the things you did before.”

1. In what past dealing were you dishonest?

An honest man alters his ideas to fit the truth. A dishonest man alters the truth to fit his ideas.

2. Have you stolen things?

3. Have you exaggerated yourself to make yourself look better?

4. In what areas of your past have you used false humility?

Did you know that humility is never gained by seeking it? To think we have it is sure proof that we don’t.

5. Have you pretended to live one way in front of your Christian friends and another way at home or at work?


In two weeks we’ll dig in again and look at Part 2 of our spiritual inventory. We’ll explore our old ways of thinking—our minds; the ways we have treated or mistreated God’s temple—our bodies; how we did or didn’t walk by faith in the past; our important past relations with our family and church.

As you start to work on your spiritual inventory, remember two things.

First, in Isaiah 1:18 (TLB) God says, “No matter how deep the stain of your sins, I can take it out and make you as clean as freshly fallen snow.”

Second—Keep your inventory balanced. List the positive new relationships that you have, the areas of your life that you have been able to turn over to God, how your attitude has improved since you have been in recovery, the ways you have been able to step out of your denial into God’s truth.

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