Growth in spurts and increments

With the arrival of a new year, new resolutions and plans appear in the mind. It’s good to reevaluate one’s goals and objectives, analyze past performance, and plan for better results.

Usually, plans made at the new year tend to be ambitious. The exercise gyms, for example, have their best attendance in January. That’s understandable. But neither should the small, incremental changes be despised. To borrow the language of Zechariah, let us not despise the day of small things, or as NET puts it, “small beginnings” Zech 4.10.

Sometimes it’s easier for us to nudge up our efforts in small ways than by big changes. Tweaks can often accomplish more than drastic measures. Continue reading

#corollaries, #spiritual-growth, #success

Would you consider including this in your church bulletin?

Or something similar?

Get spiritually charged by email twice a week with UPLift.
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Just that, no more, unless you want to elaborate.

#edification, #fpress, #spiritual-growth

Love fills every lack, because…

Love fills every lack, because it is the generator of all the Christian virtues. In this way, love is able to make us co-participants of the divine holiness. Spiritual and personal growth of each one of us is not related to our gifts, knowledge, or talents, but with our learning to love as God loves.

—João D’Arc

#love #spiritual-growth #christian-virtues

Remaining fundamentally sound

In the opening “chapter” of his letter to the church at Rome, Paul tells his brothers and sisters in Christ, “So, as much as is in me, I am ready to preach the gospel to you who are in Rome also.” (Romans 1:15)

A question that comes to mind after reading that would be, “Why would Paul “preach the gospel” to a church whose faith was already being talked about throughout the world?” (Romans 1:8) Perhaps Paul’s desire was to help the church continue in their numerical growth, and such a desire would entail preaching the gospel to the unbelievers in Rome; while that may be true, we know for sure that he desired to help the church grow spiritually (Romans 1:11), and this seems to be more in line with the context. But nonetheless the question remains, “Why would such a spiritually strong church need to “hear the gospel” again?” I think the answer is so they would remain spiritually strong!

When the fundamentals go missing from our faith, the foundation that supports true spiritual growth gets removed (for an analogy, think about professional athletes who quit playing according to the fundamentals of his or her sport and how their “game” suffers because of it). This is why spiritual growth is about staying focused on Jesus, his death and resurrection, what he means to us, what he means to the world and what kind of effect the gospel is continually having on our life. Just look at the entirety of Romans 1 and you’ll see how Paul draws this out.

Now, a failure to add to the fundamentals of our faith can be as bad as not having any fundamentals of the faith in our life (2 Peter 1:5-11, 1 Corinthians 3:2, Hebrews 5:12), but, that fact withstanding, for a strong faith to become a stronger faith, we must from time-to-time be reminded what our faith is all about in order to remain firm in what matters the most…never forget that there is a simplicity found in the gospel that is meant to remain simplistic (2 Corinthians 11:3).

To be fundamentally sound in relation to the gospel story is a wonderful blessing, but such a blessing will only remain as long as the fundamentals are a part of our heart, soul and mind.

For this reason I will not be negligent to remind you always of these things, though you know and are established in the present truth.” (2 Peter 1:12)

#fundamentals-of-the-faith, #milk-of-the-word, #spiritual-growth

Make at least one

I know, I know – everybody isn’t a fan of resolutions. But try to make at least one this year, and really work at it. If nothing else, your resolution can be spiritual in nature.

Don’t believe in making spiritual resolutions? Guess you don’t like singing, “I Am Resolved”, huh?

I mean you want to grow spiritually speaking, right? I hope for your soul’s sake that you do. Ever read 2 Peter 1:5-11 or John 15:1-4?

So think hard about what you want God to accomplish in you and what you want to accomplish in God and make a resolution to be more resolved when it comes to improving the part of us that God seeks to reward eternally.

Betcha’ you can make at least one…if you want to.

Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.” Ephesians 3:20-21

 

#new-years-resolutions, #spiritual-growth

7 ingredients in Charles Box's recipe for spiritual change

There are consequences, negative and positive, to the things we think, do, and say in our life. All behavior has built-in consequences. When you choose the behavior you choose the consequence.

Our daily goal should be spiritual growth.

“But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.” (2 Peter 3:18)

Here are some things that will bring about those positive, spiritual changes. Continue reading

#charles-box, #spiritual-growth, #spiritual-life, #transformation

Scoot, crawl, walk, run

baby_crawlby Luke Bower — I can still remember when our daughter first started to crawl. She still lacked the strength and coordination to stay up on all fours, but that did not stop her from getting where she wanted to go. She would scoot and roll around until she reached her destination. It was not very efficient and sometimes took her a long time to figure it out. She would even get frustrated from time to time, but she kept wiggling around until she got there.

It was because of all that scooting around that she eventually developed the strength and coordination to begin crawling. If she were to get too frustrated and just give up, she may have never learned the skills she needed to get around. Continue reading

#new-converts, #spiritual-baby-steps, #spiritual-growth, #spiritual-maturity