Personal Plan for Spiritual Growth
1. Am I a Christian?
A plant can’t grow if it is not rooted in fertile soil. "The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God." – Romans 8:16 The first step toward spiritual growth would be to have the assurance that your sins are forgiven and that you have cast roots into the fertile and forgiving grace of God.
2. Search my heart
Lamentations 3:40 says, “Let us search out and examine our ways.
Psalm 139:23-24 “Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my concerns. See if there is any offensive way in me; and lead me in the way everlasting.”
This process can be difficult and humiliating. If we ask God to reveal our weaknesses and failings he certainly will. It is then our responsibility to respond by seeking his grace as we try to make corrections.
3. Establishing relationship
Psalm 119:11 “I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.”
We must devote ourselves to reading his love letter to us daily. We wouldn’t dream of depriving the body of food for a day, why would we consider depriving our spirit of food for a day. This daily exercise of reading and meditating on his word will enlighten our minds to truth and it will reveal the character of God to our minds. As we walk in truth we are set free from our sins and as we learn more about him a desire to be Christ-like will capture our souls.
4. Habitual communication
Psalm 130:2 “O Lord, hear my voice. Let your ears be attentive to my cry for mercy.”
Our prayers should be more than a daily grocery list of items wanted. Prayer is the bearing of the heart to the only One who will be non-judgmental about what might lie within. It is trusting God with the most intimate details of our lives. It is seeking his guidance when we feel confused. It is confession, but it is also much praise and thanksgiving. It is also intercession for others which is pleasing to God. It is not a short exercise to be done in the early morning or late evening. It is ongoing and continuous.
Isaiah 62:6 “O Jerusalem, I have posted watchmen on your walls; they will pray day and night, continually. Take no rest, all you who pray to the LORD”
5. Don’t go alone.
Hebrews 10:25 “Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another--and all the more as you see the Day approaching.”
Romans 12:18 “If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.”
God created us to be social beings. We are to draw strength from each other and encourage each other in the faith. It is important to realize that our temptations are common to men. We share in the same struggles. How lifting to hear another tell of how victory was achieved in a struggle that may be similar to our own. Our life in the ‘rat race’ requires time commitments that would deprive us of fellowship with other Christians. It is important to prove our priorities by divvying our time appropriately.
6. Don’t keep it a secret
Mark 16:15 ““Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation”
We often hide our light under a bushel because of our shyness or timidity. The mystery of the light of Christ is that it cannot be hidden. It is something that others will see whether you want them to or not. But Christ would not have us to be passive in sharing this light, rather we are to be proactive in sharing Christ with those who wonder about the hope we have within us.