I. What is the Goal of Spiritual Life?
· Emotionally healthy
· Not burned out
· God-Inside Minded
· Outwardly show fruits of spirit
“Sometimes we get so involved in ministry that we forget to do a heart check.”
“We can be doing for God, but our hearts are not in it.”
Most of us at one time have felt we are going through the motions. This is not God’s intent. “I have come that you will have life, life to the full” John 10:10
Given a choice, most of us would not voluntarily visit our doctors for an exam. I recently had to bring my kids for their yearly exams. It was traumatic to say the least. In the end though, we know that it is for our own good. It can also help to prevent major medical problems in the future.
About 21% of population goes in for an annual exam
Also given a choice, I think many of us would say that we are a little afraid of spiritual checkups as well. After all, if we check to closely we might need to chance a habit or two. An “attitude-ectomy”
Proverbs 4 gives us a checklist to go through a spiritual checklist. My hope is that you might identify with one or two areas that God is prompting you to analyze your life and hopefully get back on track.
II. Proverbs 4:20-27 (NIV)
My son, pay attention to what I say;
turn your ear to my words.
21 Do not let them out of your sight,
keep them within your heart;
22 for they are life to those who find them
and health to one’s whole body.
23 Above all else, guard your heart,
for everything you do flows from it.
24 Keep your mouth free of perversity;
keep corrupt talk far from your lips.
25 Let your eyes look straight ahead;
fix your gaze directly before you.
26 Give careful thought to the paths for your feet
and be steadfast in all your ways.
27 Do not turn to the right or the left;
keep your foot from evil.
A. Ears (vs 20) - Are we hearing God’s Word clearly and with understanding? Are we doing what those words tell us?
B. Eyes (vs 21, 25) Are we keeping our eyes on the teachings that will guide us toward righteousness?
C. Heart (v 23) Are we protecting our heart from evil? Are our hearts soft to his leading?
D. Tongue (vs 24) Is our mouth clean and pure? Are we instilling life into others?
E. Feet (vs 26) Are we walking straight toward God's truth without wavering? Are we helping the poor, serving others as Christ would?
F. Sensitivity - are we sensitive to the leading of the Holy Spirit?
· John 16:13 - 13 But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.
A. Daily Dose of God's Word, Daily filling with the Holy Spirit
· Psalm 51:11 11 Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me.
· Ps 119:11, 105 - 11 I have hidden your word in my heart
that I might not sin against you.
105 Your word is a lamp for my feet,
a light on my path.
B. Spiritual Nourishment –
1. Bible Study
a. Ps 1:2 2 but whose delight is in the law of the Lord,
and who meditates on his law day and night.
C. Spiritual Exercise –
a. Phil 4:6 - 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
a. Heb 10:25 25 not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
D. Rest in the Lord
1. Mt 11:28-29 28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.) –
IV. Vaccinations - Protecting us against attack (forgiveness, love, no stress, anger, bitterness, guilt, fear)
· Hebrews 12:1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,
· Proverbs 12:25 25 Anxiety weighs down the heart, but a kind word cheers it up.
a. Being spiritually fit eliminates destructive behaviors and helps us to develop positive routines
· How did you do on your spiritual checkup?
· What areas do you need to re-evaluate?
· Do you need to get a new prescription for one of the following?
· How about a vaccination to remove an area blocking us?
· Quiet your heart for a minute before the Lord; it’s not worth leaving here without stopping to fix a spiritual issue. It will only grow, and potentially destroy us.