Do you remember the big signs across store windows in January, “Closed For Inventory”? Nowadays businesses rarely close for inventory. Inventory is on going and often done at night. Taking inventory is a necessity for if you own a business.
You must take great care to manage and account for your inventory, because it’s the source of your income. The proper collection of taxes, depends on an accurate assessment of your sales revenue, inventory value and cost of goods sold. Although inventories are often done on a laptop nowadays, still, someone must make assessments and create action plans.
While I took inventory of my cupboards something I do before going shopping, reminded me of business inventories. I planned to make chili but wasn’t sure I had the ingredients. Looking for cumin, chili powder, garlic, onions and of course tomato sauce and beans was my first step. A quick inventory dictated my shopping list. Shopping, preparation, cooking chili for dinner was my action plan.
Much like taking inventory in your business, in your cupboard, a good idea might be to take a “personal spiritual inventory”. What is a spiritual inventory you might ask? A spiritual inventory will reveal your spiritual needs and resources. Spiritual inventory is an honored spiritual practice in Christianity. People of faith invite God’s presence when involved in doing spiritual inventory.
“Examine me, oh Lord, and try me; Test my mind and my heart,” invites the Psalmist, “For Your loving kindness is before my eyes” Psalm 26:2 Taking time for self-examination is an ancient practice for Christians. What better time to do it than in the beginning of the New Year? Noticing where you are needy in your spiritual life, taking stock of our spiritual resources will lead you to an action plan. We are all spiritual beings with spiritual needs just as our bodies need nourishment our spirits also need replenishment. A healthy body and spiritual health depends on being aware of our needs and replenishing the lacking areas. Doing a spiritual inventory in the past days, I discovered some of my own deficiencies. I made plans to fill the voids in my spiritual life. I am learning more about myself and the barriers that keep me from God’s presence. Spiritual inventory is an ongoing process for me. To be in touch with more than my external self requires the continuous spiritual practice of self-witnessing, in order to create an action plan. As in any inventory we discover what we have on hand, our present status, and our needs. We discover the self in need of God’s infusion of love, forgiveness and guidance.
People familiar with the AA’s Step Four, “Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of our selves”, understand the urgency of working on this step.
John Baker’s Taking an Honest and Spiritual Inventory is one of many books about the path to recovery involving “spiritual inventory”. Long before AA, Emmanuel Swedenborg was keen on self-examination. He claimed that interior Christian life is possible only for those who cultivate self awareness for the purpose of discovering habits of character that ought to be modified or reformed.
Thus, self-modification techniques must be learned along with self-witnessing in order to participate in God’s plan for us.
Spiritual inventory is not only a Christian practice for the faithful. Recent studies reveal that many people come to realize a deep need though they may not understand what that need is. PsychoMatrix a spiritual inventory may be a good start for discovering your spiritual nature.
Happy New Year and may blessings be with you as you become aware of your innermost longings.