“The Father has blessed us . . with every spiritual blessing in Christ.” Ephesians 1:3 NIV.
Essential spiritual practices necessitate leisure and solitude.
My thoughts and comments today are about “spiritual practices.”
Days can be busy and noisy, leaving you over-stimulated and weary. Everything seems rushed and everyone hurried. All too often, the urgent displaces the important. The pace of our lives and the noise of our surroundings diminish things vital to our well-being. More tragically, you can lose something of yourself somewhere in the noise and busyness. Unrelenting activity produces a confused identity. A conviction of spiritual identity provides: certainty about purpose, clarity of direction, and sufficiency of your God-given gifts and abilities. So much depends upon a true sense of your God-given identity.
Essential spiritual practices necessitate leisure and solitude. We are so much like the disciples – often busy and tired. Jesus invited His disciples, “Come with Me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.” Mark 6:31 NIV. Time alone with God is where you rediscover your identity in Christ. “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.” Ephesians 1:3 NIV. In his epistles, Paul wrote prolifically about your life, “in Christ.” Read Ephesians 2:6-7 NIV.
Let me suggest spiritual disciplines that strengthen spiritual identity. Practice quiet and solitude. Practice to be quiet and content in God’s presence. Read Psalm 1:1-3 NIV. “I have stilled and quieted my soul like a weaned child with his mother.” Psalm 131:1-2 NIV. Prioritize time in God’s Word. Regular practice is as important as duration of time. “Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom.” Colossians 3:16-17 NKJV. Practice prayer with thanksgiving. Communicating your heart and gratitude to God results in communion with God. “In everything, by prayer and thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” Philippians 4:6-7 NIV.
Establish Praise and Worship as a lifestyle. Grow comfortable expressing your heart in joyful adoration. Psalm 100. Prioritize edifying Fellowship. You were made for community. Acts 2:46-47 NKJV. That is where you grow and serve best. “Let us not neglect our meeting together . . but encourage and warn one another.” Hebrews 10:23 NLT. Practice Sabbath rest in Christ. God designed life with a rhythm of labor and rest. ”Therefore, since the promise of entering His rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it.” Hebrews 4:1/9-11 NIV. The Sabbath principle incorporates the whole of one’s life before the Lord, abiding in Christ, trusting His finished work on the cross, and celebrating your identity in Christ. Read Matthew 11:28-30 NIV.
Today, I pray for you that your identity is rooted and built up in Christ Jesus.