4 Spiritual Exercises to Grow Your Faith
Have you ever heard of the “Four Spiritual Exercises”? They’re incredibly basic activities, but they happen to be as essential to your spiritual health as working out is to your physical body. Apply and you’ll see incredibly results; skip it too often and everything goes downhill. Let’s check out the Four Spiritual Exercises, and I challenge you to see if you can apply each one in your life like never before. Here we go:
- CONVERSATION. Prayer with God is nothing more than conversation with Him. He is personal, so converse with Him. The best prayers are the ones that are not written down and read verbatim, but they stream out as improvised expression of the heart. The unseen God can hear our prayers, and He reaches out to us when we reach out to Him. You might think of moving close to God in prayer somewhat like coming out of the cold in the wintertime and moving close to a warm fireplace. There is nothing quite like it. Metaphorically speaking, God will really warm your spirit with peace and comfort when you draw close to Him in sincere prayer. If you talk to Him with sincerity, you’ll feel the impact inside. Try this spiritual exercise daily.
- READING. God wanted humans to know Him, so He revealed many things about Himself in the Bible. 2 Peter 1:20-21 says that men didn’t make up the Scriptures, but the Holy Spirit of God inspired prophets to write down specific information about Himself. God put this information in a book that is accessible to virtually every nation on the planet. You can learn about what He is like, what He has done, and what He has promised to do in the future — all great ways to really get to know God. Now imagine a plant being watered. This is what it is like to receive truth from the Scriptures on a daily basis. You are the plant, and the Bible is the water that nourishes your spirit as often as you drink it in. This is how you get to know who God is. Again, I encourage you to engage in this spiritual exercise daily.
- COMMUNITY. Living a life of faith is far from easy. I know this well. There seems to be so many things attacking the small bit of faith in our hearts that we can often feel like a lone caribou in Alaska, surrounded by a pack of wolves. This is why community is important. You’re an easy target without a group, but there is safety, encouragement, and accountability in numbers. People will lift you up when you are spiritually sick, and you can help others when they are weak. So practice faith community once or twice per week — twice is best.
- SHARING. Because many of us who have faith would readily admit that our faith is the most important thing to us, why wouldn’t we tell those we love about the amazing truth of God and the amazing Savior He sent? Remember, you may be the only person to reach your specific group of friends and family with the message of God’s love, and you are likely the one who God has called to do this. This seems to be the most difficult of the Four Spiritual Exercises, but it should be exercised as possible. So make sure to put your faith into action by going out of your way to tell others. Social media and conversations over coffee are two great ways to do this. But you will have to bring the topic up, so be bold. Do it!
There you have it: The Four Spiritual Exercises. How are you doing in each of these areas? I encourage you to make it a point to learn to apply these regularly in your life and you’ll feel strengthened and encouraged on the inside by God, and you’ll begin to feel a stronger sense of peace and direction than ever before. Go for it!
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