I think one of the most significant challenges of our life in Christ is believing that it’s not just a one time event, but a journey. A journey in which we are invited to grow continually. There are many ways in which we walk through this journey. And it often looks and feels a little different for every person. Christians grow in our life in Christ through something called “Spiritual Practices” or “Spiritual Disciplines” or “Contemplative Practices”.
Think of things like intentional times of quiet prayer or yoga or walking a prayer labyrinth or meditation or the liturgy of the hours. These are just a few of possibilities. Check out the Merton Institute or the Center for Contemplative Mind in Society for more examples.
As part of our experience at the Re:Fresh retreat this week, we are practicing and studying many of these disciplines. We are boldly asking each other the question “What’s in your spiritual toolbox?”
One of our teachers, Joe Stabile, offered this as a definition for a Spiritual Discipline. He said, “A Spiritual Discipline is any act habitually entered into with your whole heart as a way of awakening, deepening, and sustaining a contemplative experience of the inherent holiness of the present moment.”
In other words, a Spiritual Discipline is something that we actively enter regularly and through the rhythm of this practice we become more fully aware of God’s holiness and presence in every aspect of our life. Joe explained it is way, “So often we think we need to try and work our way toward some sort of unity with God, when in reality we are already in union with God.”
Spiritual Disciplines don’t require you to set aside several hours each day. And your salvation is not dependent upon whether or not you utilize these tools of faith or are any good at practicing them. But I believe deeply that they help you and me walk through every hour of our day experiencing just how incredible this relationship with God is.
So…what tools are in your Spiritual Toolbox?