People who want to grow spiritually are always seeking ways in which to do it. It forces them to read their Bible regularly. They develop a habit of prayer. It leads them to conferences and seminars along with sermons and books. In fact, almost all the books that I own are designed to help myself and others become more spiritually mature. The quest to become like Jesus in all that we do pushes people into all kinds of plans and practices.
Lately, I have discovered something that is helping me expand my faith beyond what I had previously experienced. This ground-breaking form of discipleship is simply pouring my life into other people. Some might label it as teaching or possibly mentoring while others might call it discipleship or accountability. By whatever name it wears, one of the best ways to deepen your faith is to be emptying yourself.
The Bible is full of examples of this type of life. Jesus called twelve men to follow him closely as he taught and modeled faith. Paul gathered around him people like Silas, Priscilla and Aquilla, Timothy, and Titus to name a few. Each of these men took a group no bigger than a handful and as small as a single individual and poured their life and learning into them. It can happen formally or informally. It can take place over coffee or in a vehicle. The primary emphasis is not on form but content.
One encouragement is that you expand your reach beyond your own children. Many people I have talked to about this topic have responded that they are focused on their kids and don’t have time for anything else. While I think this is a valid form of ministry, I do not believe it will push you to grow to the depth that working with another adult can do. You need someone to ask you questions, to help you clarify your thinking and respond with mutual encouragement.
Let me ask you today this question, “Who are you pouring your life into?” Is there anyone you can name whom you see as your spiritual child in the faith?
One of the biggest obstacles to overcome on your walk with God is selfishness and self-centered living. Jesus and Paul both modeled a life that was others focused. Maybe that is what it is going to take to make you the kind of person God wants you to be.
If you do not have someone in your life whom you are helping to develop, then today is a good day to start. You can become a mentor, have a conversation, or take the time to share your faith. Make this day about someone else and see how it affects your heart for God.