Welcome to the Spring Clean series!
This article series is designed to help us renew ourselves after a long winter (and even longer year.) Over the next four weeks, this series will focus on ways to refresh our spirits, bodies, emotions and homes. These areas often work together in our lives as a whole and all are worth examining as we press reset and form new healthy habits. We hope this spring finds you ready to live anew!
For behold, the winter is past; the rain is over and gone. The flowers appear on the earth, the time of singing has come, and the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land.
Song of Solomon 2:11-12
Part 1: A Spiritual Spring Clean
When LifePointer Kristen Taylor and her husband Jamie moved to a new neighborhood in March of 2019, they did so as a family of 8, including a toddler daughter with special needs. Life was hectic and it seemed that as soon as they settled into a rhythm in their new home, COVID hit. Since their daughter was immune compromised, getting to know their neighbors felt impossible.
In March of this year, Kristen had had enough of being isolated. As the weather got warmer, she decided to go out on a limb (and way out of her comfort zone) to post on her neighborhood’s social media page asking if anyone would be interested in doing a Bible study. To her amazement, there was much interest, and this Sunday, she and Jamie will welcome numerous couples in her backyard for a BYOC (bring your own chair) study on the Book of Daniel. Although out of their comfort zone, Kristen and Jamie are leading by faith and letting this spring be the season for new opportunities to grow spiritually.
Here are some ways that you can revive your own spirituality this spring.
Dig Deeper into God’s Word
If hosting a study is not your calling, there are multiple applications that allow for a a personal Bible study or one done in pairs. Doing a study with at least one partner encourages interpersonal connection and accountability. YouVersion is one such app that allows for social networking within the app; you can connect to other Bible readers without disclosing any personal information, and each of the various reading plans or studies gives you the option of reading alone or with your YouVersion friends.
If you do feel up to leading a group, the LifePoint lending library offers various Bible studies that you can browse any time that the church is open. These studies cover a wide array of topics and can be found in audio, video, or book format. You can also find several previous LifePoint studies online on our Resources site.
The church can also assist in connecting you to RightNow Media, described as “a Netflix for Christian bible studies.” RightNow Media claims the world’s largest library of Bible study videos—available anytime, anywhere—and has recently launched an easy online option to view studies with a group.
Cultivate a Regular Time to Pray
With daylight savings making our days longer, there are ample hours available to set aside to pray. You can do this during a daily stroll to incorporate physical benefits, or during a daily quiet time for your emotional health.
If you feel you’re falling short on praying for other people, remember that prayer isn’t only about asking for things. In fact, prayer should first and foremost be about developing a relationship with God. Share your life, discuss your dreams, review your decisions, open your heart to guidance and direction, get to know God, and explore who God is. Continual conversations with God are the best way to know Him better.
Consider participating in a 30 day prayer challenge to get yourself started and make daily prayer a habit.
Spread Your Influence
In-person volunteer opportunities are slowly opening back up in light of the pandemic. Now is the time when many organizations can use extra hands the most.
Start at home. There are many opportunities to volunteer right here at LifePoint in various ministries, including ways to be involved during the week or from the comfort of your couch.
If you are looking for additional ways to help that are socially distant, consider taking up a pen pal at a local assisted living home or the Healing Addiction Center at The Westminster Rescue Mission. These residents have been starved for personal connection without the benefit of their own homes and families. Simply writing one letter a week to a chosen recipient can make their spring bloom brighter.
Regardless of how you choose to give back, contributing into the lives of others not only provides an opportunity for spiritual growth but also helps us feel needed, which is good for emotional health.
Flourish During a Personal Spiritual Retreat
The Bible is clear about the need to take time away to rest. In Mark 6:31, Jesus says “Come away by yourselves to a desolate place and rest a while.”
The purpose of a spiritual retreat is to temporarily leave behind the usual distractions we face to allow for an inner change to occur. These retreats allow for internal conversations that are important to deepening your faith. Even a short weekend trip can have benefits in refocusing our attention where it needs to be.
LifePoint member Michael Phillips recently booked a cabin at The Treehouse Camp in Rohrersville, MD for a weekend alone to reconnect with God. “It’s something I’ve wanted to do for a while, since the annual men’s retreat I look forward to hasn’t been happening,” he says. Admittedly, Mike has a hard time being able to relax leaving his family to fend for themselves, so he booked a room for them at a nearby hotel the weekend of his trip. The family was able to enjoy their own getaway close by, allowing him to take full advantage of time alone. Other local retreat centers include Bon Secours and Sandy Cove.
Wake Up and Worship
If you find yourself spiritually asleep at the wheel lately, don’t overlook music’s ability to bring you back to life. Researchers have studied the mood boosting benefits of music for centuries, and beyond that, God calls us to sing.
The Bible contains over 400 references to singing and 50 direct commands to sing. There’s a reason for this – music is a language of emotion in every culture of every age. God is worthy of our highest, purest, and strongest emotions – singing praise music helps us break through apathy and engage with Him emotionally.
Put together a playlist of uplifting worship music (Chris Tomlin’s Our God, Elevation Worship’s RATTLE!, and Hillsong United’s With Everything are some great numbers to include) and take a drive with the windows down and the music blasting or listen to it on your daily walk. Think about the meaning of the words as you sing along and lose yourself in praise for the Almighty.
Be Rooted in Church Community
While this can be easier said than done when some of us are not yet ready to return to in-person service, beyond streaming services, LifePoint believes in the value of connection between people to bring sustenance and strength your spiritual journey. To this end, the church is active on social media with Facebook pages dedicated to the church community, outreach ministry, women’s ministry, LPKids ministry and more. You can find a complete list of LifePoint Facebook groups here. LifePoint on Instagram can be found using the handle @lifepointchurch.us and the church is also actively sharing content on YouTube – stay tuned for the launch of LifePoint’s offical YouTube channel coming soon! You can use these resources to explore a new way to engage and make connections with the church and its members this spring.
We hope you’ve found these tips useful – please check back next week’s article on how to Spring Clean our bodies and refresh ourselves physically!
Welcome to the third installment of our Spring Clean series! This article series is designed to focus on ways to refresh our spirits, bodies, emotions and homes. These areas often work together in our lives as a whole and all are worth examining as we press reset and...
Welcome to the second installment of our Spring Clean series! This article series is designed to focus on ways to refresh our spirits, bodies, emotions and homes. These areas often work together in our lives as a whole and all are worth examining as we press reset...