Developing Spiritual Rhythms

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I’ve been feeling super vulnerable lately. My response, when I feel this way, is to introvert - and if you know me, you know I’m not particularly introverted. Maybe it’s the cold weather, maybe it’s hormones, but I also think it’s our life circumstances and starting the church. I feel soft inside - like someone could make one comment after church and I could melt into a puddle. And when I think about how I got to this place or the long couple of months that it took to get here, I am reminded of my lack of spiritual rhythms I have developed throughout the past few seasons. I was simply riding the wave of a wonderful life season, rather than strategically developing my heart for the coming seasons.  

It’s similar to the patterns of sleep we develop. When we get a good night’s rest we feel the effects a few days later. I believe spiritual rhythms are similar. If we hope to maintain a balanced spiritual life a few months from now, we must build up the muscle to maintain endurance for the long haul.

And so, tonight, when I was feeling extra sad and introverted, I decided, instead, to write about my next faithful steps. Because I’m always preaching about them, I figured I better start listening. And, because I believe in the accountability of community. We are a community at City Chapel, and as a pastor, I must be held to the same accountability standards as the rest of our tribe. So, for you and for me, here are my next faithful steps.

Tonight:

  • Spend time praying both for forgiveness and discernment in what the next few months of spiritual formation will look like.

  • Establish a plan for the next few months (January through March).

January through March:

  • Live into my plan

  • Ask someone to hold me accountable to my next faithful steps

Sometimes this process of spiritual development feels super synchronized, and when it does, I give myself permission to continue to rest in prayer, rather than creating an immediate action plan. God doesn’t need us to follow a rigorous plan simply for the sake of following it. Instead, God invites us into a place of fellowship for our sake - and that is the real purpose of the plan. I choose to discern a plan because it works best for who I am. You might need to develop a different routine. Either way, if you find yourself feeling out of sorts - like me these past few weeks - consider your spiritual rhythms. How are you spending time discerning the voice of God?

Written by Pastor Anna Radcliffe