Sometimes we get uber motivated to conquer the world. We think, "I am going to lose the weight that's been hanging on me all these years. This is MY year." Am I right? Honestly, it's a great attitude. We can step up our game for 2017. We can take a look at the things we do have control over and make the changes we know we need.
But sometimes our intentions are so good, but we neglect the one thing that might really help us in our journey. What if instead of trying to muster up our own muscles, we built into our own spirit - strong spiritual muscles? How do we do this?
Paul tells us in 1 Cor. 2:10, "But it was to us that God revealed these things by his Spirit. For his Spirit searches out everything and shows us God's deep secrets.
The depths of God are right at our disposal. But are we ready? Are we aware? Are we hungry? Is it even on our radar?
One of my pastors, Alex Seeley, says, "God doesn't give deep mysteries to shallow people." Whoah. We must become deep people, deep-spirited human beings, ripe and ready to take hold of the deeper things of God.
If we start with spiritual care, I think the rest of life falls into place much better. Let's be real for a moment. Sometimes it takes active, resurrection-power just to stay away from the Snickers bar. We need God's power activated in our life. And this is where preparing our hearts to be ready to receive the deep things of God comes in.
Just because a resource is available to us, doesn't mean we are using it. God has made Himself available to us, but some of us are sitting back expecting to be spoon-fed by a nice preacher on Sunday morning. Nothing wrong with Preacher Dan's excellent sermon, but I think God has so much more for us. Do you want it?
Let me give you 3 ways to dig deeper into your spiritual care this year. 3 ways to be ready to receive the deep mysteries of God.
1. Sit down and be quiet. Shut off the phone. Turn off Instagram. Close up the laptop. Do whatever you have to do. Our minds can only handle so much. We must create space, enter into that space, and invite Holy Spirit into it. Does it have to be a special place? Not necessarily. It can be a closet, a bathroom, or a piano room where the sunshine peeks through the shutters. That's my space. That's where I get quiet and still my soul. Quietness is completely underrated. But it's in these moments of intentional listening that God speaks.
2. Linger in the Word. Study and meditate on the Word of God not for quantity, but for quality; not for information, but for transformation.
If we skim God's instructions and relationship manual, we get skim-py faith. Ain't nobody got time for dat! Don't miss out or settle for anything less than the life-changing Word and presence of God. LINGER. SETTLE IN. SOAK IT UP.
I confess, even after all the Bible classes I've had, I still come across passages where I think, "Huh? What does that mean?" Sometimes the nugget is for a later date or a different season of life. That's cool. But believe me when I say this: There are plenty of spiritual "aha" moments waiting for you in the Scriptures today - right now, for this season in your life. You'll have to sit down. Get quiet. Open up the Word with the intention of lingering there. You'll have to observe, make notes, circle words…ponder.
Holy Spirit is in the pondering.
3. Be a doer. I once had a roommate who kept getting sick. She resisted and resisted going to the doctor. I kept telling her, "I think you need to go in." So finally she did. But guess what? She didn't take any of the doctor's advice. And she refused to take any of the medication. She didn't get any better. It's not rocket science.
It's the same way with our relationship with Jesus. If we don't plan to actually obey or implement the wisdom…it's just a waste. And God is not a waster.
Obedience is one of the keys to unlocking the secrets of God. It shows God we're trustworthy of His wisdom, His secrets.
My friend, go deeper. Build up your spiritual muscles. Sow into your soul. Take care of your spirit this year. Use these 3 easy steps…and see what happens. I bet you'll get some divine downloads.