Many times, we talk about advancements, improvements, enhancements as if everything from “the old days” has no value in todays society. We even use the phrase, “Out with the old and in with the new.” Sometimes this is because we feel we are beyond it. We are too sophisticated now. We are so much smarter now. But all too often we throw the baby out with the bath water. I believe this to be especially true in the area of spiritual disciplines.
At Ashworth Road, we just completed a series of messages called “The Lost Arts.” These messages were a challenge to believers to look to the past and find meaning and newness in our relationship with God by putting into practice the time tested spiritual disciplines. Because as I read this week, true spiritual formation comes about through age old spiritual practices.
Here are eight spiritual disciplines I believe can take us places spiritually that we never thought possible:
Sabbath. Where we find rest, renewal and delight in our busy lives. Sabbath helps us find balance between work and rest, nourishment for our weary souls, and direction so we do not lose our way.
Meditation. To think deeply about God and his Word. Meditation provides us with stability in the storm, perspective through the pain, and moves us beyond the surface, to truly knowing God. (and the emotional and spiritual space that allows Christ to construct an inner sanctuary in our hearts.)
Solitude & Silence. To step out of the noise of this world which clammers for our attention so we are able to hear and know the voice of God.
Prayer. Getting serious about speaking to and listening to God so that we might know his heart and see and experience genuine transformation in our lives and in the world in which we live.
Fasting. To deny ourselves so that we might commune with God because the spiritual is more important than the physical.
Simplicity. Finding the freedom that comes from removing the clutter and excess we have accumulated in our lives and living simply as we seek the King.
Confession. To overcome our fear and pride. To see sin as God sees sin and bring to light what was in the dark. To be broken with a godly sorrow and confess to God and to others so that we might know the forgiveness and cleansing of God.
Celebration. Finding joy in the Lord as we get to know him better and celebrating who he is and all that he has done for us.
Begin putting these disciplines into practice in your life and see if you don’t find purpose, meaning, and the relationship with God you’ve always wanted.
If you would like more information on these disciplines and how they can effect your spiritual life, check out the Ashworth Road Podcast.
*Thanks to my Team Pastor Ryan Lenerz for his help with this post and teaching this sermon series.