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Spirituality and Coping With Death

Death of course is something that none of us can avoid, it's going to happen. But, though this fact is true, it does little to give us comfort when a loved one is lost. Or how about the couple that loses a child before they are born or after they are born? There are so many emotions that course through those suffering these losses that their worlds are turned totally upside down. For some it is natural to turn to their spirituality and turn to God to find relief and seek some kind of hope and with others it's a time they may turn away from God because they can find no logic or sense in the death they have experienced.

A lot of spiritual counselors, clergy and others will try and advise those suffering from such grief to try and understand that there are five stages to grief and that they can expect to experience all of them, which are the following:
  1. Denial
  2. Anger
  3. Bargaining
  4. Depression
  5. Acceptance

Everyone will grieve in their own way and not always in this order, but they will experience each stage at some point. Along with the different stages people grieving may also experience fatigue, brain fog, lack of appetite, overeating, keeping overly busy to avoid the grief and insomnia. If these kinds of things last far longer than 6 months it's possible that the person grieving may need to seek some professional help.

It is also very common for those experiencing this kind of grief to stop and question God, asking Him why He let this happen. Then afterward it's just as common to begin to feel guilty about actually having the nerve to question God in the first place.

When a person grieves, it is probably one of the loneliest feelings in the world. So, it is very important for this person to not suffer from any prolonged isolation. Instead they need to reach out to others for emotional support. They need to reach out to their pastors, members of their church, their family and/or their friends.

If you are giving counsel to someone who is grieving remember to be encouraging and tell them to not only reach out to God but to others who believe in God for their encouragement. It's also a good idea for them to be encouraged to also find others who have suffered a similar loss. “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted” (Matthew 5:4)

Another suggestion is to encourage the grief stricken to find comfort in scriptures. The Bible offers many scriptures of comfort about Heaven and eternal life. This could be comforting to those grieving if they feel like they know their loved one is in Heaven with God and are free of pain and any suffering this world may have offered them. “There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” (Revelation 21:4)


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How to Find Christian Spirituality in Your Everyday Life

Being a spiritual person means a lot more than just going to church every Sunday. What it truly means for a Christian to be spiritual is that they need to have a personal relationship with God and they need to continually renew that bond with their creator every single day. Going to church can help to enhance the experience it's also the daily little miracles of life that surround you that will help your spirituality thrive.

You really need to be able to expect to find spirituality and what this takes is faith that there truly is a far greater power beyond any of us on this earth that is operating around you on a daily basis. Look up into the heavens and understand that your God is at work everywhere in this world of ours. Simply ask God to show you His face in the nature around you or in the face of other people as you pass them by on the street. You'd be amazed at what He might reveal to you.

Spend some alone time with God each and every day. Take some part of your day and look to gather with him through prayer and by reading His words in the Bible. You should also make sure that you have a special place that you can spend this time with Him and make it your sanctuary so you won't be bothered by others. Turn off your cell, turn off your computer and only be concerned with what messages God has for you each day at this time.

Don't just be happy and joyful when life is going good, anyone can do that, instead, rejoice always and give thanks for the good that you have even in the midst of the hard times. A simple example would be not complaining about your dog when he does something wrong instead rejoice in the fact that you have a dog as your companion. It's when you find the joy in life in the middle of strife that you will discover true spirituality.

Another thing you should do is to try and reach out to others who might be in need of help. Do some volunteer work in a soup kitchen, work in a hospital or a nursing home doing volunteer work. Take some time out of your busy life and listen to others who have problems and need someone to talk to. James 1:27 says “...true religion is taking care of widows and orphans.” By helping others you will be living the Gospel.

Try to take advantage of those little interruptions in your day that might stop you from doing your chores. For instance if a friend calls you while you are working around the house and is in need of some help, you should stop what you are doing and go to their aide whenever possible. Your chores at home will always be there but the opportunity to help someone out will not. You will be eternally blessed if you put the needs of others before your own needs.

Always, no matter how hard it might be, pray for those whom you feel are your enemies. It's far easier to pray for those you love but even an evil person can do something as easy as this, pray for those they love. It's the ability to pray for those who have even done you harm that will bring you closer to God and the spirituality that He has to offer you.

Final Note: Remember it is always better to give to someone without expecting anything back in return for your favor. What matters is that you always do the right thing and grow closer to God and in your spirituality.


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How to Be a More Spiritual Person

Spirituality is becoming a lot more prevalent in the past 20 years than it has been in quite some time now. A lot of that probably has to do with the way in which the world seems to be turning. There is so much grief, tragedy, disasters and the economy everywhere seems to be in a funk. If you think that it's time to go down your spiritual path then here are some tips on how to become a more spiritual person.

First and foremost, don't judge yourself or others. When you are trying to become more spiritual you are going to need to get rid of judgments about yourself and about others. You need to do your best to believe that there is a divine plan in everyone's life and in every situation in life.

Don't take to gossiping or talking badly about other people. Whenever you can, instead try and find something kind to say about everyone or just don't say anything at all. All humanity around us needs far more love and support than negative criticism and condemnation.

Be a light or beacon to your community. Try and lend a helping hand whenever you can and try and make some positive changes no matter how big or small. Try doing volunteer work, sponsor a child, an endangered species or donate to your favorite cause. Recycle, be conscious of the world that surrounds you. Be aware of the need and the feelings of other people.

You need to have balance in your life, so learn how to balance. Some of the joy of being a more spiritual person is the ability to be aware of the life around you and all it's challenges but not letting the challenges take over, instead being able to balance your work life, your family life, your play as well as your rest.

You should always respect yourself. In order to be more spiritual you need to be able to love yourself. When you can love yourself is when you can actually love others far deeper. Taking care of yourself is going to help you be able to turn to others and share joy, love and wisdom more freely.

Make sure to always stay in the present. Free yourself from the limitations that the past can put on you if you dwell on the past and past experiences. Learn and grow from the past and then let it go. Don't give up on it. There are going to be days where you are going to have doubts and fears. Being spiritual doesn't mean you are perfect because your soul was already created to be perfect, your body is just a temporary vessel holding it until it moves onto it's next journey. So, it's OK to be afraid and to have doubt, just don't allow that to take over your life.

Always be willing to continue to learn. A truly spiritual person has a constant thirst for knowledge and self discovery. You should always be willing to become a better person, become kinder and be more loving on a daily basis. You also need to learn how to forgive. A truly spiritual person can forgive and is filled with passion and love for all life.


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How to Give Yourself a Spiritual Retreat

When the hustle and bustle of daily life seems to be wearing you down, you might want to stop for a moment and consider that not only is your life hectic but that your spiritual life might be suffering from all it as well. If your spiritual life is suffering you are also going to start feeling like your life is dreary. This means it's time to recharge your energy and this should be done through some contemplation and relaxation. By finding a way to get in touch with your spiritual self is going to help you regain new interest in your daily activities. One of the best ways to do this is to go on a retreat.

Remember that retreats really need to be an individual activity, so this means you need to do this alone. You need to take some time for yourself where you don't have to do anything for anyone else. This means that you need to let your boss, your friends and your family know that you are not going to be available for the amount of time you decide to devote to your retreat. It doesn't have to be for days, one day can do the trick. Whatever amount of time you decide upon you need to treat it like any other appointment and put it on your calendar and commit to it.

You will then need to decide where you will be the most comfortable being for this spiritual retreat. Will you be comfortable staying at home or going out somewhere? If you decide to stay at home make sure that you wear comfortable clothing and turn off your cell phone, regular phone, computer and TV.

If home is your choice try going to your bedroom, your porch or some private area in your yard where you can read the Bible, other inspirational books or where you can take your own private journal to write in. Fix yourself a cup of herbal tea and a snack and then spend time reading or journaling. You might even want to listen to some music, draw, whatever makes you feel calm and relaxed. Stop thinking about the little things that bug you in daily life.

If your home can't give you the privacy that you need then you might want to take your retreat elsewhere. Think about the different locations in your area that fill you will inspiration. This could be a park, a museum, a local coffee shop, somewhere music might be playing. You may want to be around nature and feed the ducks or even visit the zoo. Whatever it is that keeps you from thinking about your daily life for a day.

At the end of your retreat kick back and reflect back upon all the things that you liked the most about the day you had. Write down all of the things that made you feel good and more in touch with your inner self and what things you could do without the next time you decide to take a day off for yourself.


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How Prayer Can Increase Your Spirituality and Teach You How to Talk to God

If you don't pray often then it might be hard for you to understand how it might increase your spirituality and how it's an avenue for you to have one on one time with God by talking to him. Prayer is a wonderful gift that God has chosen to give us because it is through prayer that we can be lifted far above our personal problems, the distractions of this world and all the wounds we have suffered along the way. The world in which we live in has a way of wounding our souls. So if we have a way in which we can get in touch with God, we are going to have a way in which we can find hope and prayer will give us that hope, that comfort and a sense that we belong somewhere in this universe.

There are a lot of people today who simply do not understand prayer itself and they may find themselves without any words to say when they feel like they need to talk to God. To get over that feeling you need to understand that prayer in it's simplest form is a conversation with God, no different than a conversation that you might have with a friend or family member. You need to understand that God wants you to talk to Him but it's up to you to make the first move. There is no reason to be afraid to talk to Him because He already knows who you are and completely understands you and He just wants you to get to know Him and you can do that through prayer.

To begin praying, it's important that you find a position in which you personally feel the most comfortable. It is true that in traditional prayer of the church that you generally kneel during prayer. However, it's more important to God that you feel at ease and comfortable when you go to talk to Him, so if kneeling is not for you, then don't do it.

It will be easier for you if you know what you are going to be praying or talking about to God when the time comes, a good way to go about praying is to follow these five simple things in the order that they are in:
  1. Begin the prayer with some praise and worship.
  2. Give God the thanks that He deserves.
  3. Ask Him to forgive your sins.
  4. Bring to Him all of your petitions and needs that could be yours or someone else or for both.
  5. End your prayer with more praise and worship.
If prayer is something new to you then you might want to begin with just 5 minutes at a time and then gradually work it up to at least 30 minutes each day. But this is something that you should do on a daily basis. There are some people who spend hours praying each day but that would be a sure fire way of getting a beginner to not want to do it plain and simple. You need to let yourself be guided by your feelings and not by the clock on the wall though.

Once you get into the habit of praying you will soon discover that it will bring a totally new dimension to your life. You will soon discover that if you pray on a regular basis that there will be new found peace and comfort in your life that you never had before and you will begin to get a feeling of being grounded.

Note: Make sure to include reading a little bit of the Bible as part of your prayer, you will find lots of comfort and encouragement in the scriptures. The Psalms are always a good place to start.


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Learn to Use Spirituality in Your Daily Life

With the advancement of technology in our 21st century the world has really changed and changed quickly. Even though there may be a lot of different things that are suppose to make our daily lives easier, in the long run all the advancement seems to have made our lives even more hectic. Society today seems to be drifting away from it's spirituality and that is sad. We need to recapture that spirituality and incorporate it into our hectic and stress filled lives.

If you are serious about getting in touch with your spiritual side then you will need to set aside a certain amount of time each day that you will spend on spiritual practices. After you have figured out how much time you want to take, then you can focus on the section of your when you feel the most energized. Any time that you can take to meditate, pray, read something inspirational, listen to nature sounds or spiritual music is going to help. You can start with as short of time as 5 minutes a day and then increase the amount of time when you feel like it.

You will also need to find a location that you can call your own. This should be a quiet place where you can go to on a daily basis. You don't have to limit yourself to someplace in your home. Even using your lunch and breaks at work can be the times that you can find that peaceful spot. Go somewhere like a park where you can find a quiet spot to yourself, wherever it might be that you can get some peace.

Try to raise your level of awareness about your own self, about others as well as your surroundings. You need to observe, this is a key component when it comes to your own personal spirituality. Include items that will stimulate your senses if you can. This could be candles, nature sounds, music or incense.

Figure out what kind of a spiritual goal you might like to achieve. You can use spirituality to address things like physical, emotional, personal as well as psychological challenges that you might have in your live. Focus in on those things.

You need to make sure that your entire self is involved. Any of these things, reading, singing, dancing even exercise can be part of expressing your spirituality. Communication that is verbal like chanting or prayer will help you reach your spirituality holistically. You should also write down your experiences. Writing in a journal is a very powerful way to evaluate your growth spiritually.

Understand that spirituality is not in any way an organized form of religion. But, you can increase your religious experience by incorporating spirituality with it. It is an individual thing for those who wish to practice it. It can help to increase the level of consciousness of a person's mind, body and spirit and that is why it can go hand in hand with organized religion.


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Starting Your Own Woman's Spirituality Group

We are all faced with a lot of issues in our lives and compound that with how fast paced our world has become for us, it might sometimes feel like we are drowning in all of it and losing our spirituality and our way. This can be especially true for women since the role of women has changed so drastically over the years. Women who are looking to strengthen their spirituality might want to gather together with other women who want to do the same thing. You can do this by starting up your own Spirituality Group for Women. This will give you a prime opportunity to connect with other women and to explore your spirituality with others in order to add more balance to your life.

The first thing you are going to want to do is to sit down and figure out who exactly you want to include in your spiritual group. You should think of all the friends that you have that might really be interested in getting in touch with their spiritual side and want to explore it further with those they trust and feel comfortable around.

Once you have your list compiled you need to decide when you want to have your first meeting and then get in touch with all the women that you want to invite. Then when your first meeting arrives you should take this time to figure out what the true purpose of your group is going to be. You need to include what you want to do as a group and what you all want to try to get out of the overall experience. You want to make sure that everyone is on the same page. If you want this group to include everyone sharing their problems during a meeting then include it, if you don't want it to look like a therapy session then exclude things like this. Whatever you decide must be agreed upon by everyone or the group won't stay together.

You should sit around and brainstorm on topic ideas for you next 6 months or even the next year. This way you know that your meetings are going to be organized and have a purpose. Some ideas for topics might be joy, forgiveness, integrity, compassion, grief and so on. Your list has the possibility of being endless. Some of the simplest ideas can also turn into some very inspirational conversations.

You should also consider rotating from home to home instead of always having it at one person's home. Each person from the group should be willing to help contribute to the refreshments as well. You will also need to decide upon how often you will all meet and try your best to stick with it whether it's once a week or once a month. It's important to be consistent to be successful.

Final Note: After meetings have been established with the rules in place, there is always going to be a member or two that are going to get off track and off topic. Just try and gently remind them that you need to bring the meeting back on track and remind them of the groups ground rules. Another thing you need to consider is to take off the summer months as well as the month of December since these seem to be the busiest times for most people.


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Activities That Will Help Teens With Their Spirituality

As we all know, teens can be found being involved in a variety of different activities. It's just part of teen life. Whether it is music, sports, theater and more, they get involved in a lot of different things. However, sometimes we forget to get them involved in activities that can help their spirituality. The youth of this world still need to be involved in activities that will feed their spiritual faith so they can build a foundation of principles as well as virtue so that they can make positive life decisions as they grow older.

It's important to include spiritual activities in your teen's life and you can start by going with a commitment to read religious text and to pray on a regular basis. Most things in life will stem from a foundation of some sort of faith and this can come from inspirational readings and being in communication with God the Creator. If you can get your youth to start their day off with a time of prayer or meditation you are going to be encouraging them to set a positive tone for the rest of their day. It also gives them wisdom and helps them with picking positive decisions. This kind of personal time will also help them to reflect on life in general and how to get guidance for different choices in their lives.

Being with community that also have spiritual needs and beliefs is something a teen needs to be exposed to. Some community activities might include regular attendance at church, or a prayer group. Even though your teen might find the service boring and not even related to their own lives, this is still a good thing for them to experience. They need to know how to worship. This is going to help them develop a more positive way of thinking beyond their own lives. You might also encourage your teen to join a youth group or even join the choir.

Having your child join a church youth group is a great way for them to gather with others their own age and learn and grow together through different spiritual activities. By being involved in a youth group they will be able to meet at a time when it best fits their own needs. They will be led generally by adults with experience leading youth. A youth group might include both study and discussions on issues that are important in life and that are important to them. They may often be taught through scripture and taught how to see that scripture does relate to their own personal experiences. They can learn principles for making wise decisions in life and how to live beyond their own personal desires by dealing with the needs of others.

Other youth spiritual activities could include reaching out to other teens in need. They might also be asked to volunteer and assist wherever needed such as younger children groups that might be sponsored by the same church. They may want to get together and form a worship band where they learn to sing and perform Christian music for others to listen to. They may be taught how to help others in different countries as well as learn just how blessed their own lives are. There may be field trips where they travel across country to help out those in need, especially to go and help those in need of disaster relief.

There are many different spiritual things that a teen can be involved in that may not even seem like they are being taught about God and faith, but all the while they are. They will benefit from any and all spiritual help they get at this stage in life and they will be able to take all that they learn on with them into adulthood.


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