We’ve talked before what spirituality is, so maybe because of that nobody has given attention on this question to define spiritual growth. But before I add my two bits to the question, “When do you grow the most spiritually?”, I’d like to put in a short description of spiritual growth as growing closer to God. I think it was Richard who touched on it in his response.
Mountain-top experiences have been wonderful, but few and far between. In those, I’ve felt close to God, but I’m not sure the emotion actually corresponded to a greater proximity to the Lord. May have, but can’t say.
Two other moments, and some of these have already been touched on in the excellent replies already given by the Fellows.
One, is when I was at the end of my rope. There have been in my life several moments of rope-ends. One was a deep depression I went through many years ago. I have some of my journal and prayers from that period, and I see the despair of a man who throws himself upon the Lord.
Another is the imperceptible day-to-day routine of going about my business and working for the Lord. It’s stone upon stone, brick on brick, that raises the walls and builds the house. Yes, there are the peaks and the valleys that we all walk through. But the routine of getting up in the morning, doing my task, for better or for worse, going through those seemingly mindless and repetitive motions that so many despise, these are the stuff of life, these are the tiny movements that inch me closer to the Lord. Be it the reading from Scripture, the morning prayer, the word with wife and children, the task of writing, visiting, edifying or teaching, the hidden preparation for ministry, the teaching of yet another Bible class to a pagan, the greeting today that shows me to be the same person I was yesterday and the day before — these are the steps that bring me ever closer to the image of Christ, the face of God and the fellowship of the Spirit.