I know it sounds like a basic, simplistic matter in our Christian walk, but I’m writing this post to encourage all of us to do spiritual disciplines like Bible study, prayer, fasting, and solitude. Here’s why:
- The disciplines slow us down. Most of us are so busy that we have little time to stop, reflect, and just spend time with God. We desperately need that time, though, even if we don’t realize it.
- They put us in a position to listen to God. Not only are we too busy, but we’ve also lost the practice of just quietly listening to God through His Word and His Spirit. Consequently, we often worry more and trust less.
- They emphasize relationship. Disciplines are about turning to God, focusing on Him, listening to Him, speaking to Him, and then telling others about Him. Strengthening our relationship with Him is both a motivation for, and a result of, disciplines.
- They force us to see where we place our dependence. Regularly meeting God in the disciplines = admitting our need and desire for Him. When we spend little or no time with God, though, we are confessing that we have little need for Him.
- They uncover our sin that hinders our walk with God. It’s difficult to read God’s Word, speak to Him, and focus on Him without seeing ourselves as the sinners we are. The disciplines challenge us to cry out to God for forgiveness and cleansing.
- They correct our sins of omission. Reading the Word, praying, fasting, and other disciplines are acts of obedience to the God who saved us. Thus, it is simply right for us to do them.
- They prepare us to teach and lead others. The best leaders of God’s church are those who lead from the overflow of their personal walk with Him. Apart from being with Him, we teach and lead in our own power – and that helps no one.
- They produce in us godly confidence and excitement. When we know we’ve been with God, we’re much more prepared to speak about Him. In fact, we almost can’t help but speak of Him then.
What reasons would you add to this list?