How to create a Focus that will explode your Faith!
Often, we wonder why we do not feel spiritually astute or progressive. It is fair to ask ourselves if we are doing what we should to experience that kind of growth. Growth like this only comes from a life that is committed to the spiritual disciplines that are found in basic discipleship principles. It really is not rocket science, but in our society the biggest challenge is scheduling time to do it. Below are a review of the basic concepts and ideas of the of the spiritual disciplines that we should incorporate into our lives on a consistent basis.
First, we should study the Bible for transformation. Often, we read the Bible out of habit, routine, compulsion, guilt, or simply to satisfy a genuine desire to read God’s word. The problem is when we do not meditate on it for life transformation, we have missed the point of reading the word to begin with. (2 Tim 3:16-17) Knowledge is not a valid reason alone to read the Bible. That was the problem with the Pharisees, they knew the law, but they could not obey it. they were hypocrites. Try reading smaller passages, but intentionally asking yourself how you can practically apply what you have read to a situation in your life today. That is life transformation.
Second, treat prayer as a genuine connection. I am concerned that prayer is nothing more than a hotline to the Batmobile for many Christians. “Lord I desperately need your help!” “Father, if you will get me out of this one situation!” Have you ever made statements like this? We treat God like He is simply a hotline to call when things are wrong. Probably like most parents feel when their children get older. (Except my parents) The only time we call is when we need something. I trust nobody can identify with that. The reality is, God desires a relationship like a 13-year girl with a crush on a wee lad a school. She will pester him on the phone for hour, not wanting anything but to hear each other breathe. What if we just talked with God so that we could sit still in His present, determined to KYMSS (keep your mouth shut stupid). I used to write that on my notepad before I would go into staff meetings to remind me to refrain from saying something I would regret. Is just being in God’s presence uninterrupted enough?
Third, make your faith evident by your participation. Most professing Christians do not participate in most of the ministries of the church. Why is that when the early church that we have been studying in Acts 2 lived communally and did everything together. If we are to be honest with ourselves and our churches, we would have to say that a lot of it is selfishness. We have other things that are more important to us personally. Instead of creating a proper balance, we tend lean one side or the other. We all certain ministries that we are passionate about, and when others do not participate, we get upset, but we do the same thing. Some people, approximately 80%, choose to do little if anything outside of Sunday morning worship. This is not the early church that was birthed in Acts. If you are not participating consistently in many of the ministries of the church, you should not expect to live a life of exploding faith. Take tis time to consider some areas in the church that you can be involved and commit to consistently plugging in. See if your faith does not begin to explode!
Fourth, truly embrace the fellowship of the body, the church. The author of Hebrews said to not forsake the assembling of yourselves together. Is a family truly a family that never meets together? It may be a family by surname, but it will not be a family by relationship. The body of Christ was designed to function, work, exist, worship, eat, minister, fellowship, and anything else a family would do together. Remember, the body exists to build itself up. That can not happen if you are not with it.
Fifth and last, live for the world to come, not the one we are in. I am reminded that we are mere mortals. Here on Earth that is! We will be immortal in eternity, this world with all its pleasures and enticements is temporary. These pleasures are fleeting and momentary. The eternal Kingdom is just that, eternal! If all our focus is on things here on Earth, and there is no investment in eternal things, we can not complain when our wages are handed out in the Kingdom. The most fearful of those wages would the words, “depart from me, I never knew you!” I do not want that for you, for me, or for my worst enemy. I pray that we will come together and make a commitment to live for the world to come. If we are willing to focus on these five spiritual disciplines, I know we will have a Focus that will cause our Faith to Explode!