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Over the last few weeks we’ve been exploring the practical actions we can take to get prepared to answer God’s call and move forward on our journey, and a common thread wove its way through all of our digital content. That thread was the idea of “spiritual practices.”
So what are spiritual practices and why should you…practice them? Basically, spiritual practices are tools that can be useful for establishing good relational rhythms with Jesus, but the thing about a tool is you have to pick it up and use it for it to be effective.
In The Everyday Jesus Follower’s Guide, the benefits of spiritual practices are described like this:
“Some call these tools “spiritual practices” or “spiritual disciplines” in the sense that practice and discipline are necessary to learn most anything. A spiritual practice is simply an action taken on our part that opens us up to the transforming power of God. [Many spiritual practices] are simple, and you may wonder how one or the other might ever be transformative. But when we open ourselves up to God and continue showing up to be with Jesus on a regular basis, over time the Holy Spirit begins to work in us and transform us. When we consistently spend time with Jesus, we begin to be more like him as he reshapes even the physical landscape of our brains, and these changes become part of who we are and how we react (Marion Medina, 2020).”
In her 4word blog this month, Diana Romero, CEO of Integrated Purpose Management, suggested the practice of journaling as a tool for allowing God to reveal our identity to us. Diana uses “I am…” statements in her journaling to explore what she senses God showing her about herself. Diana also recommended finding Godly mentors to speak into your life, and she pointed to assessments as tools to confirm what God might be saying about your identity.
In her 4word blog this month, Robin Greenlee, Acting CRO of MapleMark Bank, wrote of the importance of establishing daily, weekly, and yearly rhythms for spending time with God. Robin also shared the importance and benefits of practicing regular Sabbath rest so that we stop working for a time to allow God to refresh and restore us.
And finally, in this month’s edition of Driven 4word, we hear Maria Tapias talk about her disenchantment with an experience of religion that focused on rigid and difficult practices. In Part One of her story, Maria speaks about how this experience led her to search for the true nature of God.
Our relationship with Jesus is the best deal ever! Our small part is to make space in our schedule and show up consistently to be with him. His part is everything else – all the growth, all the healing, all the meaning and purpose in life – all of these are waiting for us when we take time for him and open ourselves up to his transforming power.
So what practices are you putting into place this month?
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