Love Your Spirit

This is an excerpt from Chapter 6 I Love Who I Am from Turning 30, 40, 50…

Love Your Spirit

The spirit of a man is the source of his power.” I prepared a biblical studies lesson on this concept of loving yourself. In that study, I discovered just how complicated we are as human beings but ultimately the power that pushes us is from our spirit. You cannot feed and grow your spirit with things that are not spiritual. This means that it takes faith and belief in something to begin the spiritual journey.

I am a Christian. However, I am a progressive Christian. I believe in evangelism but I do not believe in controlling or manipulating a person’s viewpoints. I believe there are truths and there are lies. I do my best to present the truth to people when they seem to believe a lie, but I also know that belief is a fundamental thing to humans. People will believe how they want to believe and people have that right. Therefore, sometimes, you cannot convince them and really, you should not because it is not good to attempt to make a person believe what they do not have the capacity or faith to believe. Not everybody will be a Christian. Some will be Islamic or Buddhist or even Atheist. As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord. Maturity allows me, as a minister, to be able to share wisdom with all types of people so I will not speak on the importance of spiritual health from a Christian-only viewpoint, but from a viewpoint that all faiths, all types of people can relate. It will be from my experience.

I cannot stress how important it is to have faith. Faith is the antidote to fear. Having faith gives your spirit the nurturing it needs to exercise the power your soul needs to get through life. I would like to believe that most of us found faith well before we turned 30 but I know that is not true. My faith journey began in my teens and has continued to grow up through this point. The thing about faith is that it transitions you from season to season. For every season of your life, you will need to master a different level of faith to conquer that season. Ways that you can increase your faith is through prayer and study. This often calls for one to be willing and able to believe in a supreme being or order which most call God.

Establishing a faith-guided relationship with God is the most potent way that you can nurture and love on your spirit. In this world, there is the concept of good and evil and both are at odds one with the other. Good and evil are spiritual in nature and the description of them are wholly spiritual. For this reason, there are good and evil spirits and good and evil spiritual influences. Your spiritual power of influence determines the way you express your soul. Ask yourself what drives you. Do you have what appears to be a hateful drive or is your drive good-spirited? My faith teaches me to meditate on the good. It also says that whatever a man thinks in his heart is reflective of the very nature of that man. You are what you think about yourself, and you express that in your viewpoints and in how you treat others.

We, as progressive Christians, believe that people’s beliefs determine their behaviors, speech, and the way they treat others. When you believe a certain way then it causes you to treat people a certain way based on what you believe. This ends up being a reflection of who you are as a person and the nature of your heart. Your spiritual well-being determines this. You can love your spirit more by cultivating a belief system that supports the ideals and values that you hold true for yourself. What I have learned as I have transitioned into my 30’s is that it is okay to believe what you choose to believe, even if it is different from what the people around you believe and if it is different from what you have always believed. The beauty of growth is that you will evolve and what you believed at one point is subject to change. I heard a quote once that said, “A person who thinks they know everything is not open to change because sometimes you will learn things that will change how you perceive and believe something”. What you believe should support your well-being. It should not hurt or deflect someone else’s belief system or person-hood, but it should support you as a person.

Your spirituality should be an exhilarating experience. It should be an expression of your life experiences and how your faith helps you get through those experiences. My faith teaches that in order to worship God you must do so in spirit and in truth. I mentioned how our spirit is the ultimate truth of who we are. Spiritual well-being allows you to be able to identify who you are. It helps you to come to terms with the true aspects of yourself, even though you may not like them or want to accept them.

I found Christ at 19. I knew of Him all my life. From 19, I begin a religious journey. I had no idea what spirituality was until I was about 23. The older I have become, I have learned to separate my religion from my spirituality, understanding that the two are different. Many of us are leaning on religion to grow spirituality when spirituality is what helps you to understand religion. Spirituality will take you places that religion cannot. Spirituality is the reflection of pure truth, what is real and irrefutable. So in essence, to love on your spirit is simply allowing yourself to stand in your truth. What is your spirit saying about you? Listen to what it is saying, explore that, and allow faith to guide you to that place.

In addition, when you stand in your spiritual truth, the truth of God begins to add revelation to your spiritual truth. You begin to understand yourself a little better. You are then able to love yourself a little more. It is at this point that you learn to feed your spirit with what it stands for. Truth is fragile and lies and evil can negatively affect it. Understand that the spirit realm has both good and evil levels and components. Not all communing and worship in truth is worship to our Holy God.

Now the question is how do you become more spiritually aware? You become more spiritually aware by focusing on what pertains to the spirit. A heavy emphasis in Christianity is that what is not spiritual cannot understand what is spiritual. How do you not be carnal-minded but spiritual-minded? Carnality says there is always a method to our madness or goodness. Carnality relates to the flesh and the body nature of who we are. Our souls are a carnal component of who we are. Our spirit attaches the divine to our very existence. Our body and our souls are created at birth. This is what the Old Testament Scriptures testify. Therefore, when it comes to things of the spirit, which are of the divine, then you must ponder on these things from a spiritual perspective, understanding that the spirit is not akin to the carnal as the carnal is defined within boundaries of time and doctrine, lessons and rules. However, the spirit is divine in the realm of faith where anything is possible and He who wills it manifests all things.

What you should be deriving from those statements is that without faith it is impossible to become spiritual. The Holy Bible says without faith it impossible to please God. If you believe that what you see is what is then you are not prepared to develop your spiritual well-being. Spiritual power and authority, even if you believe that it does not come through Christ, still requires one to believe in something that they cannot measure or see. It is a hope that cannot be fathomed but only manifested by the heart of the one who has the hope. Faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen. I cannot lead you to allow your spirit to grow through belief unless I first show you the importance of being able to believe in the first place. Spiritual classrooms have no seats available for doubters.

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