Are all of the spiritual disciplines the same? I used to view them all equally, but the more I read the Word, the more reading stood out.
If faith is the fuel of our Christian life, then Bible reading is the gas station. It’s where we go to fill up so that we can do the other spiritual disciplines to the glory of God.
Spiritual disciplines can feel similar to a diet and exercise plan. We get so bound to it that the discipline we had hoped for starts resembling legalism.
This was the condition I found myself in. In an effort to please God through my actions, I’d rigorously spend time praying, reading my Bible, and serving at church. As time went on, these disciplines grew less rewarding and more burdensome.
But the more I read the Bible, the clearer this topic became. Spiritual disciplines aren’t the kale on my plate that I force-feed myself because it’s good for me, enduring the consumption so that I can transition to something more fun like fellowship. Instead, the disciplines should bring us joy as we experience the nearness of Christ through them by faith.
Faith is the key. And there is no better place to go for faith than the Bible.
As Romans 10:17 says, “So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.”
God used the discipline of Bible reading to correct my misunderstanding. No longer did I approach Bible reading, prayer, serving in church, and evangelism as ways to earn God’s favor. That was already mine because of Jesus. Instead, I approached them as ways to draw near to Christ and experience the joy of His presence by faith. When the scriptures calibrated my attitude about the disciplines, the joy returned.
So consider renewing a commitment to consistently be in God’s Word. Not to check off a box, but to drink from the well of faith, so we can rightly pursue Christ in every area of our life.