We began a new sermon series this past Sunday called, “Spiritual Habits for Ordinary People.” My hope is that through the message and dialogue in Life Groups that our church will learn to develop Habits (Disicplines) that lead to spiritual growth. By developing these Habits- they will learn to ween themselves off of spiritual milk and feed themselves.
On Sunday, I listed three reasons why we should develop Spiritual Habits. They are:
1. Spiritual Habits Increase Our Longing for God. I believe that everyone has a longing for God because we are created by God. We long for our Creator. Because of sin- we long to be as we were created to be- meaning we long for redemption and to be made whole. Some people will seek to satisfy that longing in a destructive manner (via drugs, alcohol, etc). Others will encounter the love and grace of Jesus and begin experiencing the satisfaction that only comes from God.
But I believe that when we begin to encounter Jesus- when we begin experiencing Truth- our longing for God is satisfied but also increases at the same time. When we develop spiritual habits- we find ways to experience God through scripture, prayer, fasting, etc.- and our longing for intimacy for God increases.
2. Spiritual Habits Take Us Deeper Into Life With God. Our girls love swimming. Abbie can swim without assistance while Chloe still wears a swim vest. Both girls are most comfortable in shallow water (which seems deep to them). But for me, as an adult- the shallow end can be refreshing for awhile, it can also get boring. I need to move to the deep end where I can swim and allow the water to wash over me.
In our spiritual life- many of us are content to stay in the shallow end of our spirituality. We dip our toe in, or maybe we go in up to our ankles. But when we engaged and develop spiritual disciplines and habits in our life- we begin going deeper in our faith and in our walk with God. It’s the deep end where we encounter a spiritual vital life; it’s where we become spiritually alive and in awe of God’s majesty and wonder.
3. Spiritual Habits Create Space for Transformation: When our longings for God lead us to go deeper in our relationship with God- then we put ourselves in a place to be spiritually transformed. Without disciplines or habits- we might go to church weekly and rarely think about God or practice our faith- but when we are daily developing spiritual habits- it cultivates our hearts to encounter God in transformative ways.
Next week- I’ll post about the first habit will be discussion: The Habit of Study.