During one of our “team times,” our worship team had a nice discussion about spiritual growth. I asked them, “What helps you to grow in your faith?” It gave me an opportunity to share about the “Six Spiritual Habits” that our church endorses as primary practices that help us grow. They are:
But some of the amazing insights shared by our team transcended spiritual practices or habits. Here are some of the things they shared:
– Trials. Sometimes we get complacent in our faith. One of the ways God moves us out of complacency is through a trial or difficulty. It causes us to cling onto God and to seek His face. While God does not cause evil to happen, He is able to use the trials (that come as a result of our fallen world) to help us to bring us back to relying on God – which is always good.
– Opportunities outside of our comfort zone. Great growth comes when we step out of our comfort zone. Like trials, these opportunities cause us to rely on God. And in another way, opportunities to share our faith or to serve in a new way or lead a group or come alongside someone who is hurting or needy (or … ) also give voice to what God has been doing in our lives. So often we learn great things about God or wonderful Biblical principles, but – outside of applying them to our personal lives – never have opportunity to share them with others in a timely way. Instead of shying away from or shunning opportunities outside of our comfort zone, we need to prayerfully discern that this might be something God is calling us to do.
– Develop reverence toward the tasks we do and the people we serve in ministry. Beyond “joyfully serving” God is the understanding that what we do is “holy” to God. One of our lighting techs shared about how God showed him how important his ministry is in helping create an environment for worship and focus. It’s more than pushing buttons and moving sliders. It is a task that we treat with respect and reverence because God has called us to it.
I also thought about all the volunteers I work with, and how each of them is precious and of infinite value to God. As a pastoral leader, God has given me a very holy responsibility to love them as He does; to encourage them, inspire them, guide them, and feed them. This focus of thinking has helped me to grow in my ability to love more deeply and more selflessly.
The spiritual habits and rhythms “position us” to grow in our faith, but the circumstances we face, opportunities that are presented to us, and attitudes we choose to adopt in our every ordinary moments cause “movement” in our faith. We learn what to do in our spiritual habits and rhythms. But we actually have a context to do them through our trials, opportunities and attitudes.
So what helps you to grow in your faith?
Which spiritual habits or rhythms do you need to grow in?
What are some of the circumstances or opportunities are you facing today? And how does your faith call you to respond?
When was the last time you were in a community setting to talk about spiritual growth?