Posts Tagged ‘spiritual disciplines’

Slowing Us Down

February 24, 2010

On Monday, as I was struggling to continue my run around and around the track, it occurred to me that running was easier when I weighed less.  I know, you would think with all the exercise that I do, my weight would be where it should be, but I like to eat. On Monday, I was up ten pounds from last summer, and up twenty pounds from a couple of years ago.  I have been half-heartedly trying to lose weight since last spring.  It goes up, it goes down.

I have decided that I need to get serious about losing the weight that I had regained.  I would like to trim off some of this excess weight before my next long run in a couple of weeks.  I just think that it would have to be easier to run if I wasn’t carrying the weight belt (fat) around my waist.

These thoughts reminded me of something far more important.  Hebrews 12:1 says “Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us…”

If our Christian race needs improvement, we can look at two things.  First, are we stubbornly remaining in a sinful practice?  Or are we making a half-hearted attempt at change?  Let us get serious about removing sinful thoughts, words, and actions from our lives.  Second, are we doing those things that we know are good for our spiritual health?  Are we consistently reading our Bible, spending time in prayer, and attending church?  Or do we claim that we do not have enough time?  We should examine our schedules to see if the activities that occupy our time are the right things.  If we are too busy, then we need to cut out something other than our spiritual disciplines. 

Most of us could stand to lose some weight.

I think it is slowing us down.

Spiritual Disciplines

July 9, 2009

It has been said that the church today neglects spiritual disciplines. Spiritual disciplines are an important part of personal, spiritual growth.  The basics are scripture, prayer, and fellowship.

Scripture, both the Old and New Testaments should be read regularly.  It is also good to do more in depth study in addition to casual reading.  The memorization of meaningful passages is also a helpful practice. 

Prayer is talking with God.  It includes worship, supplication, listening, meditation, and fasting.  Worship is giving praise and thanks to God.  Supplication is bringing our requests for assistance or intervention to God.  Listening is being quiet before God and being open to the voice of His Spirit.  Meditation is quieting our minds and bodies and focusing on the an aspect of God’s Word or character.  Fasting is depriving ourselves of some material substance for a time to focus our attention on the spiritual.

Fellowship is gathering together with other believers.  It should be both formally, at church services and events; and informally, in a variety of ways and places.  It may be for worship, instruction, study,  prayer or simply recreation.  Christians are meant to be in community, not in isolation. 

These spiritual disciplines are necessary for spiritual health and should not be neglected.