Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives’ tales; rather, train yourself to be godly. For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come. ~I Timothy 4:7-8 NIV
Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth. ~2 Timothy 2:15 NIV
Exercise regularly. Eat healthy foods. Drink plenty of water. Get a sufficient amount of sleep every night. I’m sure you’ve heard these admonishments many times in your life. We’re reminded frequently that it’s important to take care of our bodies.
And what about these instructions? Read good books. Do puzzles. Don’t watch too much TV. Video games shouldn’t be played too often. Have you heard these, or other similar reminders, that we need to take care of our minds, too?
What about taking care of our spirits? How often do we receive guidance for that? Paul tells Timothy to train himself to me godly because “physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.” Paul wants Timothy to be a disciple who “correctly handles the word of truth.”
Recently, I had the opportunity to listen to a group of faith-filled women, whom I respect, as they shared testimonies about the spiritual disciplines they are practicing in their daily lives—spending time in prayer, studying Scripture, reading daily devotions, journaling, listening to Christian music, etc. Each of them shared stories of how these disciplines have been a blessing and how they have brought about spiritual growth. A couple of them even mentioned that when they stray from these practices for a while, they feel as though something valuable is missing and long for its return.
I personally struggle with establishing a disciplined approach to Bible study and daily devotions. I do read my Bible and I do read devotions, but I don’t do either consistently. I was inspired by the ladies I mentioned earlier, and I’m committed to studying Scripture and reading devotions or inspirational books more regularly this year.
I’ve also been working on strengthening my prayer life and giving it higher priority than it had before. I’m exploring some tools for helping me find focus when I’m praying. I’ve been learning about using prayer beads, and I’ve pondered the idea of coloring while praying. Both of these prayer tools have been effective for some people, helping them stay focused and disciplined during their prayer time. Although prayer can be spontaneous and free-form, there are times when spending time with God demands my full attention.
Writing this blog has been good for me spiritually. I used to journal when I was younger, but gave it up when I grew up and became too busy. Now I’m writing again, sometimes for me, and sometimes to share my thoughts with you.
How about you? How well are you doing spiritually? Do you have any tools you use to help you in your relationship with God?
I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people,and his incomparably great power for us who believe. Ephesians 1:18-19a NIV
I pray that all of our hearts are enlightened through a deepening relationship with Jesus Christ, so that we can know his great power for us.
Note: I’m working on a new adventure. In the next month or so, I’m hoping to launch a podcast. When I do, I’m planning to publish a blog post every other week and a podcast on the weeks in between. I’ll let you know when it’s ready.